Qualcomm has begun axing employees in an attempt to cut annual operating costs by up to $1 billion.

As reported by Reuters[1], a spokesperson for the US chipmaker said on Wednesday that "Qualcomm is conducting a reduction of our full-time and temporary workforce."

However, the company would not disclose how many employees will be affected.

According to the spokesperson, cost-cutting options were first explored in areas which did not require letting employees go. However, Qualcomm eventually came to the conclusion that long-term growth required a reduction in the workforce.

As of September 24, 2017, San Diego-based Qualcomm employed close to 34,000 employees worldwide, including full-time, part-time, and temporary staff.

Bloomberg reports[2] that potentially up to 1,500 employees could be axed during the cuts. The majority of redundancies are expected to take place in California, but may also impact other locations.

Severance pay will be offered.

Back in January, Qualcomm promised shareholders that the company would make $1 billion in operational savings annually in order to improve earnings.

The promise, and therefore the restructuring effort, came at a time when rival Broadcom was engaged in a hostile takeover bid.

Broadcom offered approximately $146 billion[3] to acquire Qualcomm. Qualcomm fought hard against the takeover bid, arguing that such an amount did not offer shareholders any value in comparison to the firm's future prospects.

Pressure mounted, and Qualcomm promised to improve earnings to entice shareholders to reject the buyout proposal. The fight seemed destined to continue[4], but US President Trump stepped in and prevented the merger on the grounds of national security.

Despite Broadcom's failure to acquire Qualcomm, the chip maker is still accountable for its pledge to investors.


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