Wed, Jan 14, 2009 - Page 11 News List

AU Optronics to trim workforce

By Lisa Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

AU Optronics Corp (友達光電), the world’s third-largest supplier of liquid-crystal-display (LCD) panels, yesterday said it would eliminate less than 2 percent of its global workforce.

The Hsinchu-based company’s announcement comes amid widespread job losses in Taiwan and elsewhere.

About 760 of the company’s 38,000 employees around the globe will be affected, Hsiao Ya-wen (蕭雅文), an official at the company’s corporate communications department, said by telephone.

She declined to offer the number of employees in Taiwan who would lose their jobs.

Hsiao said the layoffs were a regular workforce adjustment based on the annual performance reviews. Each year the company lays off between 1 percent and 2 percent of its employees after staff reviews, she said.

As the global economic downturn hits demand for flat panels used in TVs and computer monitors, AU Optronics has seen a drop in its factory utilization and sales in recent months, which has prompted the company to take cost-saving measures.

Last month, the company said it would slash the salaries of senior executives by between 10 percent and 15 percent and demanded a mandatory three days of unpaid leave per month for all employees beginning on Jan. 1.

The company also said it would not extend contracts with temporary workers.

The company’s preliminary consolidated revenue of NT$14.7 billion and unconsolidated revenue of NT$14.7 billion for last month were down by 17 percent and 16.7 percent respectively from the previous month. Consolidated and unconsolidated revenues for last month were both down by about 70 percent year-on-year, AU Optronics said earlier this month.

For last year, the company’s unaudited consolidated revenue totaled NT$423.9 billion, down 11.7 percent from a year earlier. Unconsolidated revenue totaled NT$422 billion, a drop of 12 percent year-on-year.

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