As wired business shrinks, Verizon expects 13,000 job cuts

But wireless business shows growth

Verizon Communications Inc. expects to reduce its workforce by another 13,000 in 2010, following the same trend it has carried out in each of the past two years.

CEO Ivan Seidenberg today called for similar reductions in 2010 as experienced in the carrier's traditional wired business in 2008 and 2009. He made his comments in a morning call with analysts, also noting growth in the carrier's wireless business.

But overall, the carrier saw a $US653 million net loss in the fourth quarter on revenue of $US27 billion. Revenue, however, was nearly 10% higher than in the fourth quarter of 2008.

The loss of 23 cents in diluted earnings per share included a $US3 billion one-time charge for workforce reductions to pay for severance and other costs. He noted that the company had been "streamlining" traditional wired operations to focus on other areas.

Meanwhile, wireless revenue grew by 22.5 per cent, and Verizon Wireless now has 91 million customers.

"We've had the same rationale for some years, reducing headcount since 2005 in the wireline business because that business is shrinking," a spokesman said.

Overall, Verizon has 223,000 workers. The reductions will not all be layoffs and will include cutting contractors, early separations and more, the spokesman said.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld . Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen , send e-mail to mhamblen@computerworld.com or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed .

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