Big Blue layoffs much smaller than reported: IBM

IBM dismissed reports that it will be laying off as many as 110,000 workers beginning this week but admitted it is planning to cut “several thousands” of positions.

Early Monday morning there was a flurry of reports that Big Blue was letting go of as many as 26 per cent of its global workforce. News of the layoffs came days after the company’s earnings report showed that IBM made US$24.1 billion in revenue, down 12 per cent from previous reports. Analysts were also expecting IBM’s (NYSE: IBM) revenue to be about $24.77.

“IBM does not comment on rumours, even ridiculous or baseless ones,” the company said in an email to Reuters. “If anyone had checked information readily available from our public earnings statements, or had simply asked us, they would know that IBM has already announced the company has just taken a $600-million charge for workforce rebalancing. This equates to several thousand people, a small fraction of what’s been reported.”

Even the IBM workers organization [email protected], doubted the reports that a hundred thousand IBM employees were about to receive their pink slips.

“Various members of the media are picking up on Robert Cringley’s assertion that 100,000 IBMers will lose their jobs next week in a massive reorg at IBM. The Alliance has no information that this is true and we are urging caution on reporting this number as fact,” wrote Lee Conrad, national coordinator of [email protected], said in an email to technology publication WRALTechWire.”But as you all know, anything can happen at IBM anymore and this is the time of year that IBM cuts jobs.”

Back in 1993, IBM let go 60,000 workers.

IBM’s cash flow comes mainly from service contracts. However, IBM’s revenue has been affected by the growing number of companies shutting down their data centres and increasingly relying on cloud service providers.

Journalist Robert X. Cringely, author of The Decline and Fall of IBM, had reported notices could go out as soon as next week to 26 per cent of the company’s workforce.

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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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