Sun to lay off 15% of its workforce

Today, Sun Microsystems announced a restructuring plan that involves reducing its global workforce by 5,000-6,000 employees, or 15%-18% of its total staff. Under this plan, the MySQL division may be more protected.

When Sun reported its first quarter 2009 earnings, it said diminished hardware sales to the financial sector had an unmistakable effect on the company's North American and European revenue. It posted a loss of $1.67 billion and did not even announce its guidance for the next quarter.

Sun expects this employee reduction to save between $700 and $800 million annually, after an incursion of $375-$450 million related to the layoffs in fiscal 2009. Somewhere around the third fiscal quarter of 2009, it expects to begin recouping a "substantial portion of the run rate benefit."

Jonathan Schwartz, Sun's CEO said, "Today, we have taken decisive actions to align Sun's business with global economic realities and accelerate our delivery of key open source platform innovations -- from MySQL to Sun's latest Open Storage offerings."

Rich Green, Executive Vice President of Software, also announced his resignation today as Sun reorganizes its software division into new groups. The new groups are broken into the Application Platform Software group which will handle Sun's Java technology franchise, MySQL open source database products, and software infrastructure products such as GlassFish Application Server. The Systems Platforms team will logically deal with Sun's systems business: computing, storage and networking systems. The Cloud Computing and Developer Platforms team will be tasked with Cloud efforts such as Network.com, StarOffice, and NetBeans, as well as their related developer communities.

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