While reporting its financials for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2016, as well as for the entire year that ended July 30, Cisco Systems Inc. on Wednesday announced a restructuring plan that would eliminate 5,500 jobs at the technology company. Some reports before the announcement had put the number of employees being fired at 14,000.
The dismissals amount to about 7 percent of Cisco’s total workforce and the company will start eliminating those jobs in the ongoing quarter. The rationale behind the downsizing was given in a statement.
“Today's market requires Cisco and our customers to be decisive, move with greater speed and drive more innovation than we've seen in our history. Today, we announced a restructuring enabling us to optimize our cost base in lower growth areas of our portfolio and further invest in key priority areas such as security, IoT, collaboration, next generation data center and cloud. We expect to reinvest substantially all of the cost savings from these actions back into these businesses and will continue to aggressively invest to focus on our areas of future growth.”
Cisco has made it something of a habit to cut jobs around the time it declares its annual earnings. The company announced 6,000 layoffs in August 2014, dismissed 4,000 employees in August 2013 and cut 6,500 jobs in July 2011.
The company’s revenue for the May-July quarter was $12.6 billion, up 2 percent from $12.4 billion a year ago. Its net income of $2.8 billion and earnings per share of $0.56 also grew by 21 percent and 24 percent, respectively, over the same period.
For the entire fiscal year, Cisco reported revenue of $48.7 billion, a growth of 3 percent from $47.3 billion during the previous fiscal. Net income grew 20 percent to $10.7 billion while EPS jumped 21 percent to $2.11.
While the results were encouraging, the news of job cuts dampened market sentiment and Cisco shares suffered on Nasdaq, where after falling 1.29 percent during regular trade, they dropped another 1.4 percent during after-hours trade Wednesday. In contrast, the Nasdaq Composite index had closed almost flat, up only 0.03 percent.