Western Digital to cut 750 jobs

Q2 loss forces company to extend cost-cutting scheme with plant closure

Storage specialist Western Digital is to axe 750 jobs, nearly six per cent of its worldwide workforce, after announcing a loss of $82.3 million for its second quarter on the back of declining sales. That sales slowdown saw revenue for the quarter fall to $738.6 million from the $969.6 million is recorded for the same period last year. At that time, it recorded a loss of $145.2 million, so at least the company made more money this time, despite shipping fewer products. Western Digital's recovery plan involves the extension of a major cost-cutting programme. Most of the job cuts will be made by the consolidation of the company's two Singapore plants into a single site. The company said it expects to take a hit of $45 million in the next quarter to cover the redundancies, which are the latest of some 3250 jobs Western Digital has terminated since October 1997. President Chuck Haggerty also predicted improved trading conditions will help the company's recovery -- largely through increased sales to big-name PC vendors. The $190 million the Western Digital said yesterday it is hoping to raise from a public stock offering will help too. ®

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