Computer giant IBM plans to cut a "large number" of US employees in its business services unit and transfer their duties to India, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday.
The newspaper, citing "people familiar with the situation," said that IBM generally avoids public disclosure of layoffs and the number of US jobs being eliminated could not be determined.
It said that earlier this year, IBM sent notices of layoffs to around 4,600 employees in its software, sales, semiconductor and finance groups.
The Journal, citing an internal document, said the global business services group targeted for layoffs is the largest at IBM in terms of revenue and employment, with 180,000 employees worldwide.
The newspaper said IBM had 398,500 workers worldwide at the end of 2008 and 115,000 in the United States, down from 121,000 at the end of 2007.
IBM is one of the few major corporations to have weathered the global economic showdown and ended 2008 with 12.9 billion dollars in cash and marketable securities in hand.
The Journal reported last week that IBM was in talks to buy computer server company Sun Microsystems Inc. and the Indian press has reported that IBM may be interested in fraud-hit software services exporter Satyam Computer Services.
(c) 2009 AFP
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