IBM to cut 10,000 European jobs ahead of sale, report says

UK and German workers will reportedly bear the brunt of job cuts.

Rae Hodge Former senior editor
Rae Hodge was a senior editor at CNET. She led CNET's coverage of privacy and cybersecurity tools from July 2019 to January 2023. As a data-driven investigative journalist on the software and services team, she reviewed VPNs, password managers, antivirus software, anti-surveillance methods and ethics in tech. Prior to joining CNET in 2019, Rae spent nearly a decade covering politics and protests for the AP, NPR, the BBC and other local and international outlets.
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Hoping for a $2.3 billion bump in the last quarter of 2020, IBM will cut 10,000 jobs in Europe before selling off most of its legacy IT services business in the region, Bloomberg reported Wednesday. UK and German jobs are expected to bear the brunt of the cuts in the division, which manages daily support functions for client data centers and IT support for installing, operating and repairing equipment. 

IBM said in its October earnings call it would sell off the division in favor of fueling its hybrid cloud computing and artificial intelligence unit, and expects to see a $2.3 billion fourth-quarter boost from the move. The cuts were disclosed during a November meeting with European labor representatives, a union officer told Bloomberg. 

IBM didn't immediately respond to CNET's request for comment. An IBM spokeswoman reportedly told Bloomberg that staffing decisions are made "to provide the best support to our customers in adopting an open hybrid cloud platform and AI capabilities," adding that the company will "continue to make significant investments in training and skills development for IBMers to best meet the needs of our customers."

Bloomberg reports that IBM aims to complete the carve-out as a tax-free spinoff to IBM shareholders by the end of 2021.

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