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U.K. Equipment maker has already eliminated 4,000 other jobs since April
LONDON (AP) - British telecommunications equipment maker Marconi said Wednesday it expects to cut 4,000 more jobs from its worldwide workforce.
The new cuts are in addition to 4,000 jobs lost since April.
The London-based company said sales for the current financial year were likely to fall by 15 per cent, while operating profits could be cut in half.
It said that loss excludes Marconi's U.S.-based Marconi Medical Systems, which Dutch company Philips Electronics NV said Wednesday it will buy for $1.1 billion (U.S.) in cash.
Marconi said customers were delaying purchases as they felt the pinch from the global economic slowdown.
The company, which employs about 50,000 people in 19 countries, said the new job losses were part of a cost-cutting plan, and that 1,000 of the jobs would be cut in management.
Marconi's board had asked the London Stock Exchange to suspend its shares earlier in the day and said it needed to ''consider current trading and the outlook for the rest of the year,'' triggering expectations of the job cut announcement, which followed in the evening.
Marconi requested resumption of trading Thursday.
In April, Marconi had outlined plans to cut 3,000 jobs. On Wednesday, the company said 4,000 people had ''left or agreed to leave'' since those plans were announced.
Marconi said that after the new round of cuts, and the outsourcing of part of its business, its staff base will have been reduced by a total of 10,000.
Marconi executives remained in a board meeting for most of the day following suspension of the company's shares - $3.43 a share, well below the high in September of about $17.50. Union leaders were given the news at the London head office.
Sales have slowed in the United States, where Marconi generates about 40 per cent of its business. Weaker economic conditions have depressed demand for the its products.
Marconi, which changed its name in 1999 from The General Electric Co. PLC, has a substantial presence in the United States due to its acquisition in 1999 of Cleveland-based Reltec Corp. and Fore Systems Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh.
In April, Marconi announced a restructuring plan that it expected to generate annual cost savings of up to $280 million by the end of 2003.
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