The U.S.-based Motorola Mobility may shut down some of its operations in Indiaas part of its global strategy that calls for a reduction by 20 percent of its 20,000-strong workforce and the closure of more than 30 sales offices and R&D units worldwide, sources said.
But the mobile phone maker will also give generous severance packages and outplacement services to employees that will be affected by the restructuring plan.
Industry executives aware of developments at the handset makers India operations said the employees were being let go and only people working on projects relevant to products being sold in the U.S. market were being retained.
Motorola is scaling down on a large scale in India as it was reducing the number of models in the market and limiting its presence to just smart phones, according to industry sources.
The company would continue to sell its phones until stocks are exhausted while service centers would continue to function.
Motorola Mobility's director for communications in Asia Pacific William Moss did not give specifics or details on the move except in saying that the firm's global restructuring will affect India and its workforce who will be given other employment opportunities apart from compensation.
"India is affected by this global restructuring, but we will continue some of our operations here and we will provide support for our devices sold in the market," Moss said.
Moss said that while the company expects this strategy to create new opportunities and help return our mobile devices unit to profitability, "we understand how hard these changes will be for the employees concerned."
"But we are committed to helping them through this difficult transition by providing them with generous severance packages, as well as outplacement services to help people find new jobs," Moss added.
Early in August, Motorola announced it was restructuring its global business to make it leaner and profitable. The move will lead to 4,000 people losing their jobs, two-thirds of which will be outside the U.S. Its operations in India and Asia would also shrink as a direct result of these decisions.
"We also plan to close or consolidate about one-third of our 90 facilities globally, as well as simplify our mobile product portfolio--shifting the emphasis from feature phones to more innovative and profitable devices," Moss added.
Motorola's new chief executive Dennis Woodside was recently quoted in international media as saying that operations in Asia and India, research and development centers in Chicago, Sunnyvale and Beijing would also be trimmed down.
He added that Motorola would leave unprofitable markets, stop making low-end phones and concentrate on only a few models, preferably smart phones.
Motorola's India presence has been less than significant which could be the reason of the exodus. It launched around 27 models last year but its market share remained tiny, nowhere near the top 10 mobile phone makers including Nokia, Samsung and Micromax that lead the home market, according to a survey by Voice&Data.
The shake-up in Motorola Mobility follows Internet giant Google 's acquisition of the company for 12.5 billion U.S. dollars that was announced a year ago and 18 months of dropping global market share.
Reports in international media reveal that since the completion of acquisition in May this year, Google has reduced management size at Motorola by firing around 40 vice presidents and has instead hired new senior executives. However, this report could not be independently confirmed.
Motorola's 17,000 patents along with its hugely successful Android operating system would be Google's arsenal against Apple and Samsung, the leaders in these key markets.