Nokia has announced its plans to make changes in its factories in Komarom (Hungary); Reynosa (Mexico) and Salo (Finland). The measures follow a review of smartphone manufacturing operations that Nokia announced last September and aim to increase the company’s competitiveness in the diverse global mobile device market.
The above three factories are planned to focus on smartphone product customization, serving customers mainly in Europe and the Americas while device assembly is expected to be transferred to Nokia factories in Asia, where the majority of component suppliers are based.
“With the planned changes, our factories at Komarom, Reynosa and Salo will continue to play an important role serving our smartphone customers. They give us a unique ability to both provide customization and be more responsive to customer needs,” said Niklas Savander, Nokia executive VP for markets.
“Shifting device assembly to Asia is targeted at improving our 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. We recognize the planned changes are difficult for our employees and we are committed to supporting our personnel and their local communities during the transition,” said Savander.
The above statement is an indication that the move of the device assembly unit to Asia, where the relevant skilled labour is more readily available and cheap, would result in the loss of a substantial number of jobs for Nokia employees.
“As a consequence of the plans, the number of steps in manufacturing and the amount of work carried out at the sites in Komarom, Reynosa and Salo are expected to decrease substantially. The changes are anticipated to impact approximately 4,000 employees in total, leaving,” reads the Nokia media release issued today.
Personnel reductions are planned to be phased through the end of 2012, while Nokia will offer a comprehensive locally-tailored support program, including financial support and assistance with local re-employment.