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Dell axes 900 jobs in Austin plant shutdown

But hey, $3bn in savings!

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Round Rock's Sword of Dell-ocles has once again dropped on employees of the world's number two PC manufacturer.

Dell today said it will close its Austin, Texas desktop PC manufacturing plant and lay-off 800-900 workers. The Topfer Manufactering Center will end its operations by January 1.

The sky is apparently always sunny on the executive side of the mountain. On a release announcing the latest culling, CEO Michael Dell is quoted saying it's a "$3 billion opportunity to drive both productivity and efficiency."

Gee, when you put it that way.

Dell expects to see the $3bn savings over the course of the next three years.

Dell is also keen to remind us that today's news is part of a wider strategy announced last May to literally decimate its employee count. The goal is to cut at least 8,800 jobs, or about 10 per cent of its total workforce. In the last nine months of the company's fiscal 2008, it has thus far axed 3,200 from existing ops, while gaining some staff through acquisitions.

The company is also considering selling its financial services division — current business partner, CIT, is tangled in the US subprime lending mire, and its viability has been called into question.

Dell will mull over its fate over the next two quarters. A solution could range from doing nothing to selling the unit, valued at $1bn, Dell said. ®

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