Alcatel-Lucent to Cut 5,000 Jobs, R&D Safe
Alcatel-Lucent is planning to cut 5,500 jobs by the end of next year, with IT professionals tied to its unprofitable services contracts likely at greatest risk. The European telecom-equipment maker announced Thursday its planning to slash 6.4 percent of its worldwide workforce of 78,000. And, says Reuters, it’s taking aim at its services contracts for managing networks that are bleeding red ink, as well as its overseas operations that are underperforming. Although the layoffs will cut across its global operations, one area that will remain untouched is Alcatel-Lucent’s research and development staff. That makes sense, considering the company hopes its patent portfolio will boost its revenues. The company’s R&D efforts are driven by Bell Labs, which his headquartered in New Jersey and is responsible for its other lab locations ranging from China to India. In addition to keeping its R&D staff intact, the telecom-equipment maker is also planning to maintain its wide product portfolio, rather than severing large pieces of its business. This move comes as the company is seeking to cut $1.5 billion in costs, amid its telecom customers putting a kibosh on spending for new networking equipment as the economy struggles, Reuters says.