Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, a division of US global security firm Lockheed Martin Corporation, said Monday it would cut about 800 jobs by year-end to improve its competitiveness.
The company said the payroll deductions represent about 4.5 percent of the overall workforce and are "aimed at improving its competitive posture."
The company will offer a voluntary layoff plan aimed at minimizing layoffs at the division's facilities, primarily in Denver, Colorado, and Sunnyvale, California.
"The action we are taking, though difficult, is necessary to adapt to our current projected business base and to maintain an appropriate workforce to meet our customers' needs," said Joanne Maguire, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space Systems.
The company underscored that the job cuts announced were separate from a downsizing underway as a result of the planned phase-out of the Space Shuttle program in 2010.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems designs and develops, tests, manufactures and operates advanced-technology systems for national security and military, civil government and commercial customers.
Parent company Lockheed Martin, headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, is a global security company and major US defense contractor that employs about 146,000 people worldwide.
(c) 2009 AFP
Explore further: International Space station to beam video via laser back to Earth