RIM to cut at least 2,000 jobs

Written by Reuters | Toronto | Updated: May 29 2012, 07:52am hrs
Next round of layoffs to be planned for around June 1

Research In Motion (RIM) is preparing for a major restructuring beginning in the next couple of weeks that will see it eliminate at least 2,000 jobs worldwide, the Globe and Mail reported on Saturday, citing unnamed sources.

The Canadian newspaper, citing several people close to the company, reported that the next round is layoffs is said to be planned for around June 1 a day before the BlackBerry smartphone makers first quarter ends but some expect the announcement even earlier. One source close to the company said the impending layoffs could hit as many as 6,000 people and affect RIMs legal, marketing, sales, operations, and human resources divisions.

The strategic question is: are you accelerating into a better future or shrinking to a niche operation, said the source, who declined to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the job cuts.

A RIM spokeswoman declined to comment on the report. But the spokeswoman said RIM now has about 16,500 staff globally. This is down from a peak closer to 20,000.

Last July, RIM announced plans to cut about 11% of its workforce, or 2,000 jobs. A string of high-level employees have departed RIM recently, including global head of sales Patrick Spence, who was set to take a senior job at audio company Sonos. Several sources close to the company said RIM had been letting more junior staff go for several months in what has come to be known internally as Goodbye Thursdays, because the cuts typically occurred on that day of the week. The job cuts have failed to boost the companys stock. On Thursday RIM shares hit a multi-year low of C$10.87 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.