Microsoft to lay off 18,000 over 6 months

Microsoft announced July 17 US time that it is restructuring to simplify its organisation and align the new Nokia Devices and Services business that was acquired in April with its overall strategy, a move that will cut up to 18,000 positions over the next year.

“The first step to building the right organisation for our ambitions is to realign our workforce. With this in mind, we will begin to reduce the size of our overall workforce by up to 18,000 jobs in the next year. Of that total, our work toward synergies and strategic alignment on Nokia Devices and Services is expected to account for about 12,500 jobs, comprising both professional and factory workers. We are moving now to start reducing the first 13,000 positions, and the vast majority of employees whose jobs will be eliminated will be notified over the next six months,” read an email from CEO Satya Nadella to Microsoft employees.

The same email revealed Nokix X staff have been axed. “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.does not have a future,” Nadella said.

Xbox Entertainment Studios, which was set up to provide original video content, is another casualty, US media such as CNBC and PC World have reported.

The plans were outlined in an email from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella to Microsoft employees, and an email from Microsoft Executive Vice President Stephen Elop to Microsoft Devices Group employees.

“We plan to ramp down engineering work in Oulu (Finland). While we plan to reduce the engineering in Beijing and San Diego, both sites will continue to have supporting roles, including affordable devices in Beijing and supporting specific US requirements in San Diego,” read Elop’s email.

“We plan to right-size our manufacturing operations to align to the new strategy and take advantage of integration opportunities. We expect to focus phone production mainly in Hanoi…and start a phased exit from Komaron, Hungary,” Elop added.

The actions associated with the plan are expected to be substantially complete by Dec. 31, 2014, and fully completed by June 30, 2015.