C & W confirms 3,500 jobs will go

13 Nov 2002

UK telecoms company Cable & Wireless has announced that following a comprehensive review of the company’s activities, it is to reduce jobs across the group by around 3,500, from 12,500 to 9,000.

The key conclusions of the review were that Cable & Wireless should withdraw from domestic business markets in the US and in continental Europe, except for multinational Enterprise and Service Provider customers. In addition, the company’s established businesses in the UK and Japan should be reshaped to reduce costs further and produce greater focus on profitability and cashflow.

When complete, it is anticipated that the restructuring will save around £400m sterling (€630.5m) annually, compared to current operating costs. Capital expenditure to support the restructured business in the financial year 2003/2004 will be approximately £250m sterling (€394.1m), around £200m sterling (€315.2m) less than in the current year, giving total cash savings, post restructuring in the region of £600m sterling (€945.9m) in comparison with the current run rate. The annualised current revenues of the businesses to be discontinued as a result of the restructuring, are approximately £300m sterling (€472.9m)

The company has a presence in Dublin, Shannon and Cork. However, no indication is available as yet on whether Irish jobs will go. Given the fact that the company is pulling back from the US and continental Europe, it would be reasonable to assume that much of the job losses will be centred in these areas.

By Dick O’Brien