Siemens' top executive Peter Loescher confirmed upcoming worldwide job cuts for the company, and did not disclaim the revealed number of 17,000 slashed posts.
The head of German engineering group Siemens has confirmed that a major restructuring is on the cards, after reports said the firm wanted to lay off 17,000 workers, according to comments published Sunday.
"At the end of last week we presented our plans to the board. Some of the details included in this obviously made it out into the open straight afterwards," chief executive Peter Loescher told the Bild newspaper.
"We have announced the target of saving 1.2 billion euros (1.9 billion dollars), mostly in administration costs, by 2010," said Loescher in comments to be published in full on Monday.
"The world economy and the oil price are adding to the pressure to act. We have to batten down the hatches at the company."
The Suddeutsche Zeitung and the Financial Times said Saturday that Siemens planned 17,200 job cuts from its 400,000 workforce including 6,400 in Germany alone -- considerably more than the 10,000 expected by trade union IG Metall.
The scale of the cuts is unprecedented in the 160-year history of the group, which makes everything from hearing aids to nuclear power stations and which posted worldwide sales last year of more than 70 billion euros.
Loescher took the helm at Siemens last year with the firm in turmoil after allegations of bribery on a huge scale forced the resignation of his predecessor Klaus Kleinfeld and chairman of the board Heinrich von Pierer.
He was vowed to clean up and streamline the company, announcing a 900 million euro hit to earnings in March after problems with a range of major projects were uncovered and thousands of job cuts in its telecommunications and lighting divisions.
Date created : 2008-06-29