Sony Ericsson closes NC, other sites as HQ moves

Nov 18, 2009 By EMERY P. DALESIO , AP Business Writer

(AP) -- Cell phone handset maker Sony Ericsson will move its North American headquarters from North Carolina to Atlanta and close a half-dozen sites worldwide as it retrenches against what it expects will be a tighter market and cuts about 1,600 jobs globally.

The joint venture between Sweden's LM Ericsson and Japan's Sony Corp. will consolidate product development operations by closing sites in Research Triangle Park; Seattle; Miami; San Diego; Kista, Sweden; and Chennai, India, spokeswoman Stacy Doster said.

The closure is part of a plan announced in April to cut worldwide staff of 10,000 by 20 percent at the joint venture between Sweden's LM Ericsson and Japan's Sony Corp., Doster said. About 1,600 jobs remained to be cut to meet that goal by the middle of next year, she said.

The cost-cutting follows the loss of 2,000 jobs last year.

The 8-year-old company has about 425 workers left in Research Triangle Park after shedding hundreds of jobs in the past year. Operations include customer support, customers service, sales, finance and research and development.

Doster said she did not know how many were employed at other locations the company planned to close. She also did not know how many would be added in Atlanta when that site takes over North American headquarters functions.

"There's a project team looking at what makes sense in what areas of the business," Doster said. "We've got to figure all that out across the whole organization."

Atlanta was chosen in part because of its proximity to AT&T Inc., one of the company's largest customers, Doster said. The city also is desirable as a "gateway into Latin America" because of its international connections through Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, she said.

Product development would be consolidated in Sony Ericsson operations in Redwood Shores, Calif.; Lund, Sweden; Tokyo; and Beijing, Doster said.

The company announced last month that its losses worsened to euro164 million ($245 million) amid falling sales in the third quarter, up from a euro25 million ($37.25 million) loss in the same period a year ago. Sales during the quarter dropped by more than 40 percent.

said its share of the global handset market came to around 5 percent in the third quarter, compared to 38 percent for market leader Nokia Corp.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: As dust clears, what's next for Sony?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Sony silent on reports of 'PlayStation phone'

Jun 29, 2009

Sony Corp. remained tight-lipped over reports that it may combine its PlayStation Portable game console with a mobile telephone into a new gadget to challenge rival Apple's iPhone.

Nokia posts 66 pct fall in Q2 profits, shares drop

Jul 16, 2009

(AP) -- The world's top cell phone maker, Nokia Corp., on Thursday said second-quarter earnings fell 66 percent as the global recession sapped demand. The company scrapped its target to gain market share this year and its ...

Sprint Nextel signs networking deal with Ericsson

Jul 09, 2009

(AP) -- Sprint Nextel Corp. has signed a seven-year deal with LM Ericsson for the Swedish telecommunications equipment maker to take over operation of Sprint's wireless and wireline networks.

Nokia to lay off 1,700 worldwide

Mar 17, 2009

(AP) -- Nokia Corp. said Tuesday it will lay off 1,700 people worldwide to cut costs, as the global economic downturn strikes deeper into the mobile phone sector.

Recommended for you

As dust clears, what's next for Sony?

6 hours ago

The Sony hacking attack continues to deliver more dramatic plotlines than any fictional movie, but meanwhile the movie studio must move forward and tackle the next steps in minimizing the mess. Will Sony ...

It's down to the wire for online shopping

10 hours ago

As the holiday shopping season winds down, FedEx, UPS and online retailers are using the last few days to try to avoid the problems that occurred last year when severe winter weather and a surge in late orders ...

China's Xiaomi raises more than $1 bn in funding

Dec 21, 2014

China's top smartphone seller Xiaomi Corp. is raising more than $1 billion in a fresh round of funding, a move which would raise its valuation above $45 billion, a report said Sunday.

Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

Dec 20, 2014

Japan's biggest newspaper, Yomiuri Shimbun, featured a story about Sony Corp. on its website Friday. It wasn't about hacking. It was about the company's struggling tablet business.

Sony faces 4th ex-employee lawsuit over hack

Dec 20, 2014

A former director of technology for Sony Pictures Entertainment has sued the company over the data breach that resulted in the online posting of his private financial and personal information.

Sony tells AFP it still plans movie release

Dec 20, 2014

Sony Pictures boss Michael Lynton denied Friday the Hollywood studio has "caved" by canceling the release of "The Interview," and said it still hoped to release the controversial film.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.