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Microsoft to cull 18,000 jobs, Nokia to suffer bulk of cuts

Microsoft to cull 18,000 jobs, Nokia to suffer bulk of cuts

In what has become the largest round of redundancies in the company's history, Microsoft has today revealed 18,000 jobs are set to go across the course of the next 12 months, with recent acquisition Nokia taking the brunt.

The Finnish giant's Devices and Services division, which was acquired in September 2013, will have its workforce cut by 12,500 staff – almost 70 percent of all the layoffs – with the vast majority of jobs to go being notified within the next six months.

Microsoft claims that while it is "eliminating roles in some areas, we are adding roles in certain other strategic areas."

Strategic decision

"My promise to you is that we will go through this process in the most thoughtful and transparent way possible," detailed CEO Satya Nadella.

"We will offer severance to all employees impacted by these changes, as well as job transition help in many locations, and everyone can expect to be treated with the respect they deserve for their contributions to this company.

We will realise the synergies to which we committed when we announced the acquisition last September.
Satya Nadella

"First, we will simplify the way we work to drive greater accountability, become more agile and move faster. Second, we are working to integrate the Nokia Devices and Services teams into Microsoft.

"We will realise the synergies to which we committed when we announced the acquisition last September. The first-party phone portfolio will align to Microsoft’s strategic direction."

Looking ahead

Nadella claims Microsoft is keen to focus on "breakthrough innovation" at Nokia in order to take on the high-end of the smartphone market.

Much of the Finnish firm's success in recent years has come targeting low-end consumers, or people upgrading to a smartphone for the first time.

Nokia's Lumia range has been invaluable to Microsoft's Windows Phone platform

"In addition, we plan to shift select Nokia X product designs to become Lumia products running Windows. This builds on our success in the affordable smartphone space and aligns with our focus on Windows Universal Apps.

"Making these decisions to change are difficult, but necessary. I want to invite you to my monthly Q&A event tomorrow. I hope you can join, and I hope you will ask any question that’s on your mind. Thank you for your support as we start to take steps forward in evolving our organisation and culture."

[source: Microsoft]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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