More job cuts possible at Alcatel-Lucent

CEO Patricia Russo admits the firm may cut more than the 12,500 jobs already planned this year.
More job cuts possible at Alcatel-Lucent
By Michele Howe
Sun 23 Sep 2007 10:41 AM

The pressure on newly merged company Alcatel-Lucent notched up a little last week when shortly after the company issued its third profit warning in nine months, CEO Patricia Russo admitted that further job cuts could be on the horizon.

In an interview with French newspaper Le Figaro, Russo disclosed that the telecoms equipment supplier could further reduce its headcount.

"It is possible that we may cut headcount more in certain areas than is scheduled under the current plan," she told the newspaper.

Alcatel-Lucent announced earlier this year plans to cut 12,500 jobs from its global workforce of 79,000, originally planning to axe 9,000 jobs and then adding an extra 3,500 to that number.

The firm employs approximately 2,000 people in the Middle East. However, Mazen Hamadallah, country manager for the UAE, Oman, Qatar and Kuwait at Alcatel-Lucent, has so far maintained that it is unlikely that any jobs will be cut from the regional operations.

Alcatel-Lucent was formed last year from the merger of French firm Alcatel and its US rival Lucent.

The alliance got off to a difficult start, with reports that staff and customers were experiencing ‘uncertainty'.

Then in May, the company announced a $330.3 million operating loss for the three months to March 31.

Russo has since reportedly come under pressure from board members to bolster her management team.

In the interview with Le Figaro, Russo defended her own management record since the merger, however, telling the newspaper she has no plans to step down.

"There is no question of it," she said, adding that after only nine months it was premature to judge whether the merger had been a failure or a success.

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