Top computer hardware maker IBM, reeling from a drop- off in business, is laying off hundreds of employees to cut costs, according to media reports Monday.
There was no statement from IBM early Monday. However, two Vermont television stations reported layoffs had already begun at IBM factory spanning the Winooski River in Essex Junction and Williston.
WCAX-TV, citing someone who had been informed he was being laid off, reported that 700 people were losing their jobs in the latest contraction at IBM. WPTZ-TV said “hundreds” had been informed they were losing their jobs during a shift change shortly after 7 a.m.
The job cuts are largely from the company’s research and development, manufacturing and management divisions, according to WCAX. IBM executives and state officials did not immediately return calls for comment. Governor James Douglas said last week he had no advance notice of developments at IBM, but suggested he was expecting job cuts. The company directly employs more than 6,000 workers in Vermont, and thousands of others rely on it for contracts and other business. IBM laid off 988 workers at the Essex Junction plant last year as part of a broad restructuring of its microelectronics division, which designs and produces microchips.