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Today word leaked that Lenovo was laying off hundreds of Motorola employees. This information initially came from upset employees who took to social media after learning that Friday would be their last day, one of whom says he had been with the company for over 20 years. Lenovo later confirmed the layoffs, and although they attempted to describe the figure in a positive way, the number they revealed in their response was actually notably larger than initial rumors seemed to indicate.

It was assumed that this layoff was somewhere in the ballpark of last year’s round which saw 200 employees losing their jobs. At worst, the darkest guess would be that could be in the realm of the 500-employee cut that took place before that. Addressing the rumors, Lenovo released a statement including the following:

Lenovo today announced a resource action impacting less than two percent of its approximately 55,000 employees globally. The majority of the positions being eliminated are part of the ongoing strategic integration between Lenovo and its Motorola smartphone business as the company further aligns its organization and streamlines its product portfolio to best compete in the global smartphone market.

That’s around 1,100 employees, many of whom it seems clear were Motorola employees who became redundant or non-cost effective during the company’s acquisition and subsequent redirection by Lenovo. One of the employees posting to social said that he believed that this is part of an ongoing pattern in which Lenovo is shifting operations to China. Lenovo has denied these claims, saying that they are “absolutely committed to Chicago and we plan to maintain our Motorola Mobility headquarters there.”

Lenovo says that these changes are “part of a continued effort to manage cost, drive efficiency, and support ongoing improvement in overall financial performance,” which is three ways of saying that they’re just cutting costs.  The company finds themselves in a hard position, battling industry titans in a peaked mobile phone market.

What do you think of Lenovo’s most recent layoffs? Let us know in the comments below!

[press]Lenovo today announced a resource action impacting less than two percent of its approximately 55,000 employees globally. The majority of the positions being eliminated are part of the ongoing strategic integration between Lenovo and its Motorola smartphone business as the company further aligns its organization and streamlines its product portfolio to best compete in the global smartphone market.

The company is also making adjustments in other areas of the business as part of a continued effort to manage costs, drive efficiency and support ongoing improvement in overall financial performance. While these actions are never easy, they are a necessary part of our continued efforts to ensure long-term, profitable growth across all of our businesses.

Lenovo is absolutely committed to Chicago and we plan to maintain our Motorola Mobility headquarters there. Chicago has a well-deserved reputation for technical excellence and as the hub of our global R&D for our smartphone business we expect to take advantage of local talent to continue developing Moto products there.[/press]

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