Wed, Feb 28, 2001 - Page 1 News List

Twinhead cutbacks claim 177 jobs

STAFF WRITER

Twinhead International Corp (倫飛電腦), the nation's No. 4 notebook computer maker by market value, announced yesterday the firing of 177 employees at its Kaohsiung plant, located in the Tafa Industrial Park (大發工業區).

Of the 177 employees -- who account for 20 percent of its total workforce -- 117 Taiwanese will be shown the door today. The jobs losses include 40 production line workers and more than 70 administration personnel and sales representatives.

Meanwhile, the other 60 -- foreign contract workers -- will be given pink slips once their contracts are up, the company said.

The company denied local media speculation that the layoffs are associated with its plan to merge with another notebook computer maker, Chi Ho Computer Co (志合電腦). Twinhead bought a 9 percent stake in Chi Ho last year.

Wu Cheng-teh (吳正德), vice president of Twinhead, told a local cable station that the company aims to make its operations more cost-effective amid a slumping economy and that the firings are a necessary move to lower labor costs.

According to Wu, the 117 domestic employees cost the company about NT$4.5 million a month and that the cuts are expected to save it as much as NT$140 million (US$4.4 million) annually.

Twinhead, a listed firm in on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, has reported sizeable business losses over the last two years. It reported sales turnover of just NT$8.39 billion (US$260 million) last year, a 33.1 percent decline from the previous year.

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