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Motorola Mobility to Exit South Korea; 500+ Jobs to Go as Google Restructure

December 10, 2012 - Written By Tom Dawson

When the deal between Google and Motorola finally went though to buy the Motorola Mobility arm from the company it quickly became clear that Google had some plans to get some restructuring done. And fast. There’s been a number of international offices close their doors since Google took over and now, they’re closing another one. This time around the restructuring is happening in Korea and will bring with it a number of job losses.

The restructure of Motorola Mobility’s Korean activities will take place in 2013. Two business units will remain but the company will cease to market and/or sell devices in the South Korean market. 10 per cent of their R&D staff will be kept and offered relocation packages. This latest move is another in a long line of restructuring efforts by Google across the globe and comes as no surprise. Up until today, South Korea was one of the few territories around the globe that had a Motorola presence. Since Google started these restructuring plans there have been nearly 4,000 jobs cut and they’ve since closed down almost all of their international websites, as of a month ago.

Motorola Mobility aren’t the first company to leave Korea behind as HTC recently closed their operations there, as well as Yahoo making plans to vacate the region as well. With Apple, LG and Samsung having South Korea pretty much sewn up it looks as though there’s little room for someone else to muscle in and take a bite out of the apple. Media in the region suggest that there are as few as 40,000 phone from Motorola in operation through the carriers SK Telecom and KT.

It’s certainly a shame to see Motorola having to further cut back their international presence but, when it comes to the international market it’s no secret Moto hasn’t been doing that well and it comes as no surprise to us that they’re moving out of Korea as well. You can take a look at the full statement given to The Next Web below:

“On December 10th, we began communicating to staff in Korea our plans to close most of our operations in Korea, including our research and development and consumer mobile device marketing organization. The changes in Korea reflect our plans to consolidate our global R&D efforts to foster collaboration, and to focus more attention on markets where we are best positioned to compete effectively.

Our Home business and iDEN go-to-market operations will continue operating in Korea. We will also continue to provide customer service and warranty support for mobile devices that have been sold in Korea.

This was a difficult but necessary decision. We are very proud of the work done by our talented teams in Korea, and the many contributions they have made to our business over the years. We will offer relocation to about 10 percent of our R&D staff there. For other employees we will strive to make the transition as smooth as possible.

We are grateful for the support of our customers in Korea”