Sony Ericsson to close in RTP

November 18, 2009 12:34:00 PM PST
Sony Ericsson announced Wednesday that it will close its regional headquarters and research and development unit at Research Triangle Park.470 people will be losing their jobs.

"We're actually consolidating eight sites globally and we've announced today that RTP will be one of those sites that we phase out over time," explained Karen Morris with Sony Ericsson.

Workers learned the news in a closed door meeting with company leaders Wednesday morning. They were told the economy is part of the reason for the change.

"When we look at our business, we will be moving the US site closer to the customer so we will have an office in Atlanta, Georgia and then Redwood Shores, California," said Morris.

Many of the workers declined to comment after the meeting. This is not the first blow for tech jobs in the area. Earlier this year, IBM laid off local workers, and the Dell plant in Winston Salem announced it was shutting down - dropping almost 1000 jobs.

Sony Ericsson will offer transfers to other states.

"Those employees that want to go there will be offered the chance to go and apply for those positions and then the employees affected globally will either be given time to return back home or however they want to handle that personally," said Morris.

North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue called the announcement unexpected.

"This is hard. It's hard for North Carolina. It's hard for me as Governor. It's much harder for the folks who are going to get those pink slips than it is for any of us put together. And the bottom line is things good are happening in North Carolina," she said.

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