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IBM To Take $2bn charge for layoffs, HDD sale

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ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

IBM Corp will take a $2bn charge in its second quarter to cover the quiet flurry of restructuring it has been engaging in over recent weeks.

The IT giant announced the charge late yesterday, the same day it announced 1,500 job cuts at its chip operation and a day after it finalized the sale of its hard drive business to Hitachi.

The announcement yesterday said the charge was related to charges associated with the exit from the disk drive business, write-offs of assets related to the microelectronics business, and "charges related to productivity initiatives, principally work force reduction."

IBM staff will still have the shadow of the ax hanging over them - IBM said the majority of employees affected by the restructuring had now been notified, but this presumably leaves the way open for more, targeted lay-offs.

While the company publicly announced the microelectronics and hard disk drive actions yesterday, earlier cuts at its server and services businesses were made relatively quietly. This led to confusion about how far the company was planning to go in paring down its workforce.

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