Chalk up Jan. 14 as another horrid day for job prospects in the tech sector.
The same day Nortel Networks declared bankruptcy, and after VoIP equipment maker Sonus Networks Inc. said it’s slashing 40 more jobs, Motorola Inc. (MOT) had to go and outdo that number a hundred times over with the announcement it’s cutting 4,000 additional workers.
The majority of the layoffs will come in the mobile devices unit – the division that has failed to follow up the once-popular RAZR with another hit. Instead, Motorola steadily has lost ground to Apple Inc., Nokia, Samsung and other handset manufacturers and its constant losses have reflected that fact. But Motorola’s hoping to swing the pendulum back in its direction. Sanjay Jha, Motorola’s co-CEO, insisted in a prepared statement that Motorola is “making good progress in developing important new smartphones for 2009.”
The layoffs will begin immediately, Motorola said. The company expects to save a total of $1.2 billion in 2009 alone thanks to the layoffs and other recent cutbacks, which include the 3,000 people fired in 2008’s fourth quarter.