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Business

Sony releases more details on planned job cuts

Japanese electronics giant is getting serious about large-scale job cuts announced earlier this year. The company has announced it will close down a production facility in Japan and will speed up layoffs in Europe.

Japan's Sony Corporation announced on Friday it would have to close a whole factory in its home country as part of the company's earlier decision to cut 10,000 jobs globally by the end of March next year.

It said it aimed to shut down the firm's Minokama factory in Gifu prefecture. Sony added the plant currently has a workforce of 840 and produced lenses for digital cameras, lens blocks and mobile phones.

The Japanese electronics giant said those functions would be transferred to other factories in the country.

Competition pressures

The closure of the Minokama production facility plus early retirement schemes at Sony's headquarters and other plants would cut the domestic workforce by 2,000, Sony said in a statement. It also confirmed that half of the reductions in question would be in non-manufacturing support jobs.

An additional 2,000 jobs would be cut across Europe, Sony announced, with half of them to go in the wake of a cancelled joint venture with Ericsson of Sweden. Sony said the job cuts would help it save $385 million (294 million euros) annually which would be required to offset losses in its TV and other device segments.

US rankings agency Moody's had downgraded Sony earlier this month, citing the company's weak profitability and cash flow. The firm lost $5.83 billion in the fiscal year to March, marking its fourth annual loss in a row.

hg/cg (Reuters, AFP, AP)