IBM to cut 190 jobs in Dublin

Wed, Oct 20, 2010, 01:00

Technology firm IBM is to cut 190 jobs from its server manufacturing business in Dublin by March next year as it moves the operation to China.

The move has been flagged for some time, as the focus of IBM’s Dublin Technology Campus has switched from manufacturing of hardware products to software and services in recent years.

In a statement today, IBM said it planned to move its low end/mid range server manufacturing operations from Mulhuddart in Dublin to Shenzhen, China, by March next.

"This change will place us closer to our growth markets and suppliers, while providing greater operational efficiency and cost savings," the company said.

It is understood IBM will seek to redeploy as many of the affected workers as possible to other areas of its business that it is expanding. However, a number of employees will be forced to take the redundancy package.

The first workers are expected to leave the company in February.

Fine Gael Dublin West TD Leo Varadkar described the move as "devastating" for workers and their families.

"Alongside the pain these job losses will cause, IBM’s announcement heralds the end of hardware manufacturing in the area," he said.

“Ireland should be attracting jobs in these blue-chip, high tech companies but instead workers are seeing them shipped abroad to countries such as India and China. This does not bode well for Fianna Fáil and the Greens attempt to build the ‘smart economy'."

He called on IBM to provide affected workers with a "generous redundancy package", as the firm had benefitted from low tax rates and Government grants in previous years.

IBM is understood to be offering workers a package that includes about five weeks' pay for every year of service.

Earlier this year, the company announced that it was transferring manufacturing of high-end servers to Singapore. An additional 120 jobs were shed when the transfer to the Far East was first announced in February 2009.

In April, IBM sought 310 voluntary redundancies at its Dublin manufacturing facility.

However, in March it announced it would create 200 jobs in Dublin with the establishment of a research centre to look at technologies to help manage cities.

The company employs more than 3,000 people in Ireland.