Summary:

The layoffs that started in India and Europe are now coming stateside. IBM admits to rebalancing its workforce but won’t confirm numbers or units affected.

IBM Headquarters Armonk
photo: markhillary

It looks like the IBM layoffs that started in India and Europe earlier this month have arrived stateside.

CNET, citing an unnamed source, reported that IBM is laying off up to 25 percent of its hardware unit employees. And reports in the Burlington Free Press confirmed cuts in IBM’s Essex Junction facility. Other outlets reported cuts in in Poughkeepsie and Endicott, N.Y.

The IT giant telegraphed cuts to come on its last earnings call in January when it reserved $1 billion to cover workforce reductions in the coming year. At that time analysts estimated that would mean cuts of 10,000 to 15,000 jobs out of IBM’s total 400,000 workforce.

Since then, IBM sold its its X86 server unit to Lenovo so there were bound to be reductions in hardware personnel. IBM said 7,500 of those Technology & Systems group employees would be offered jobs at Lenovo.

An IBM spokesman said the company “continues to rebalance its workforce” to meet the changing needs of customers. He cited increasing investment in IBM’s new Watson unit ($1 billion); building up its cloud “footprint” $1.2 billion);  Platform-as-a-Service capabilities (another $1 billion.) and in nanotechnology (no figure provided). These investments will bring “hundreds of new jobs” to IBM’s home state of New York, he said.

Earlier this week, Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM promised to keep 3,100 jobs in the state for two years, as part of a deal struck with Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The spokesman would not comment on which business units are affected or on numbers or percentages of cuts.

Feature photo courtesy of Flickr user markhillary

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