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BlackBerry axes 200 jobs – including a third of its HQ staff

Troubled smartphone biz's latest recovery plan: Paying fewer people

One-time smartphone giant BlackBerry has laid off 200 of its remaining employees in a pair of cuts.

The Canadian biz will eliminate 75 jobs from a manufacturing facility in Sunrise, Florida, US, and approximately 125 from its corporate headquarters in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

It was earlier rumored that the company was about to axe as many as 1,000 workers, but that has been denied. Rather, it is shedding 35 per cent of its Waterloo workforce plus the cuts to its Sunrise site. At the start of 2015, BlackBerry employed 6,900 people worldwide.

In a statement to the press, a spokesman for BlackBerry said:

As BlackBerry continues to execute its turnaround plan, we remain focused on driving efficiencies across our global work force. As a result, approximately 200 employees have been impacted in Canada and Florida. For those employees that have recently left the company, we know that they have worked hard on behalf of our company and we are grateful for their commitment and contributions.

Among those confirmed to be leaving the company is Gary Klassen, the developer behind BlackBerry Messenger. Klassen had been with the company since 2000, most recently serving as director of architecture and innovation.

The cuts come in the wake of what were seen as encouraging quarterly results from BlackBerry. The company recently completed an acquisition of rival Good Technology. ®

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