Kyocera to reorganize handset business, cut 360 jobs

Kyocera International announced late last week that it was reorganizing its business by combining its Kyocera Wireless unit with its Sanyo Telecom unit, and said that it would cut 360 jobs as a result of the moves. The job losses are the latest to affect the wireless industry, where handset makers and chip vendors have been hit by slumping demand. 

The job cuts will come from Chatsworth, Calif.-based Sanyo Telecom and at San Diego-based Kyocera Wireless as well as its subsidiary in Bangalore, India, Kyocera Wireless India.

"KWC in San Diego will still design the phones for the Americas. What's moving to Japan is most of the development of those product designs," said Kyocera spokesman John Chier. "[Kyocera] will keep some of the engineering [in the U.S.], but most will be consolidated in Japan. Once the products are finished being developed, KWC will still have an engineering/technical team in San Diego that will work with [Kyocera's] customers on product testing, application and software/firmware support, and working with the carrier labs."

The telecom equipment giant acquired Sanyo Electric's mobile phone business for up to $468 million in a January 2008 deal, effectively creating the world's sixth largest handset business. Kyocera had 1.4 percent global handset market share in the fourth quarter, according to ABI Research. 

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