Nokia will cut 4,000 manufacturing employees at factories in Hungary, Mexico and Finland in order to shift device assembly to Asia, where most of its component suppliers are based.
The three factories in Komarom in Hungary, Reynosa in Mexico and Salo in Finland will now focus on smartphone product customisation for consumers in Europe and America. As a result, the amount of work carried out at these sites will decrease significantly, impacting 4,000 employees.
Staff cuts will be phased through to the end of 2012 and Nokia will offer a support programme for affected employees, such as financial support and assistance with local re-employment.
Niklas Savander, Nokia executive vice-president of markets, said the three sites will “continue to play an important role” in serving their smartphone customers, but that shifting its device assembly to Asia will help it improve its time to market.
“By working more closely with our suppliers, we believe that we will be able to introduce innovations into the market more quickly and ultimately be more competitive,” said Savander.
“We recognise the planned changes are difficult for our employees and we are committed to supporting our personnel and their local communities during the transition,” he said.
Nokia has recently made major changes to its mobile strategy, after it struggled against strong competition from other smartphone vendors.
It changed its primary mobile operating system from Symbian to Windows Phone and recently released the first of these devices.