Sony to shutter 20 stores in US, implement staff cuts

Sony will close some stores in the US as part of its restructuring efforts, the company said Wednesday.

To "maintain its competitiveness in an evolving consumer electronics market" Sony announced the closure of 20 US stores.

That includes stores in California, New York, and Florida, as well as other locations.

Sony also made a statement about staff cuts.

In line with Sony Corporation's Feb. 6 earnings announcement outlining an estimated headcount reduction of roughly 5,000 employees globally, Sony Electronics confirmed a total staff reduction of one-third by the end of the calendar year, affecting approximately 1,… Read more

Microsoft will reportedly unveil major restructuring Thursday

Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer is expected to unveil a dramatic and long-awaited restructuring at the tech titan as early as Thursday, according to AllThingsD.

Ballmer is likely to realign the company around services (software) and devices, in both the consumer and business sectors. The CEO might have already laid the groundwork for that transition last year when he wrote a note to shareholders declaring that "this is really a new era for our company."

CNET has contacted Microsoft for comment and will update this report when we learn more.

The reorganization is expected to put Skype President … Read more

Sharp to cut 5,000 jobs in 3-year plan

Electronics firm Sharp will be cutting 5,000 jobs as part of its three-year restructuring plan in efforts to survive.

As reported by The Asahi Shimbun, axed employees will mainly come from China and Malaysia. The number of employees at Sharp's main office in Osaka will be reduced by 50 percent. Sharp's director numbers will also be cut from 12 to six, and the firm will employ "significantly fewer advisers" who were once presidents or vice presidents of the electronics firm.

Sharp currently employs 51,000 people worldwide.

The midterm management plan, obtained by the publication, … Read more

EA announces more layoffs, said to be hundreds of workers

As if a leadership shakeup, canceling of games, and one round of layoffs weren't enough, it appears that things are going from bad to worse for Electronic Arts. The gaming company announced Thursday that it's going through another round of layoffs.

"In recent weeks, EA has aligned all elements of its organizational structure behind priorities in new technologies and mobile," EA wrote in a blog post Thursday. "This has led to some difficult decisions to reduce the workforce in some locations. We are extremely grateful for the contributions made by each of our employees -- … Read more

Opera cuts staff in WebKit-related restructuring

Retooling its browser with the WebKit engine isn't the only big change at Opera Software. The Norwegian company also cut its staff significantly in the last quarter of 2012.

According to the company's fourth-quarter financial results (PDF), the company had 777 employees at the end of 2011 and 931 at the end of 2012. But that figure includes 91 "employees associated with the organizational restructuring."

Moving to WebKit and dropping its in-house Presto browser engine. means Opera is cooperating with Google, Apple, and others using the open-source WebKit software, and that means the company could get … Read more

Motorola Mobility to leave South Korea, cut jobs

Motorola Mobility will close "most" of its South Korean operations by 2013, according to a leaked internal memo.

According to the memo (in Korean), the move is part of a continued global restructuring effort by parent company Google, which bought the smartphone maker earlier this year for $12.5 billion. Since then, however, restructuring costs have bumped the overall price close to $13 billion.

The deal was proposed by Google to acquire more than 17,000 patents from Motorola, but the hefty price tag will soon be challenged in court, where the search giant may discover that … Read more

HP foresees $8B write-down for third quarter

Hewlett-Packard said today that it is swapping executives in its enterprise services unit and taking an $8 billion charge to write down goodwill associated with the division. HP also noted that more employees are taking early retirement packages than previously expected.

In a statement with a bevy of moving parts, HP said that its non-GAAP earnings in the third quarter would be better than expected. However, HP's reshuffle of the services unit as well as the goodwill charge indicate that the company hasn't quite figured out how to compete with IBM. HP Enterprise Services revenue, which accounts for … Read more

Cisco to lay off another 1,300 employees

Cisco Systems plans to reduce its global workforce by about 2 percent, or 1,300 positions, as part of the company's continuing restructuring to cut costs and increase profits.

The layoffs are "part of our plan to drive simplicity, speed of decisions and agility across Cisco," spokesperson Karen Tillman said in a statement today. "We routinely review our business to determine where we need to align investment based on growth opportunities."

Cisco had 65,223 employees at the end of its third quarter.

The new round of layoffs comes a year after the networking-equipment maker … Read more

Nokia restructures China operations, shuts down offices

Nokia is shuffling its operations in China as it hopes to better address the largest smartphone market in the world.

The company confirmed to the Wall Street Journal that it would close its operations in Chengdu and Shanghai, but increase the size of its operations in Beijing and Guangzhou.

Once a major player in China, Nokia has watched its market share fall there just as it has elsewhere around the world. But if the company wants any real shot at a comeback, it will need a strong presence in China, similar to its need to be more visible in North … Read more

RIM reportedly cutting jobs in small batches

Research In Motion has quietly begun its much-anticipated layoffs as part of a cost-cutting restructuring.

The struggling BlackBerry maker has been laying off employees in batches of at least 10 for the past several weeks, people familiar with the situation told The Wall Street Journal. Employees in RIM's quality control, operations, and parts departments have been targeted so far, according to the report.

RIM, which has announced a broad restructuring in an effort to save $1 billion by the end of the fiscal year, confirmed to CNET that it has begun cutting jobs as part of that restructuring.

"… Read more