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Learning English - Words in the News
01 June, 2007 - Published 14:01 GMT
Motorola to cut 4,000 jobs
Motorola handset

Motorola, the American electronics manufacturer, is to cut an extra 4,000 jobs in a move to trim costs. It's been losing ground to arch-rival Nokia in the intensely competitive global market for mobile phones. This report from Mark Gregory:

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If mobile phones were shared out equally, nearly half the world's population would have one. The number of handsets is now close to three billion. But a big market doesn't necessarily mean a profitable one.

Competition between rival manufacturers is cut throat in the extreme. There are four big mobile phone makers: Nokia, the market leader, Sony Ericsson, Samsung and Motorola. Currently Motorola is seen as the weakest with relatively high costs and few snazzy new models. The company had already announced 3,500 job cuts. Now it's slashing another 4,000 posts. It's part of a restructuring programme intended to trim operating costs by a billion dollars. The company says its number one priority is restoring profits, not gaining market share at any price.

Analysts say Motorola's main problem is Nokia. Nokia ruled the mobile phone roost for many years, then went into something of a decline, but in the last year or two it's come back with a vengeance. Motorola so far at least has been seen as the main victim of Nokia's recent revival.

Mark Gregory, BBC

Listen to the words

shared out equally
when everyone gets the same number/amount

a handset is a telephone mouthpiece and earpiece forming one unit

bringing money (from a business)

cut throat in the extreme
here, very high, very severe

stylish and attractive, usually in a showy way

cutting, getting rid of

to trim operating costs
to reduce the amount of money needed for the company to exist and work

number one priority
the most important issue

ruled the mobile phone roost
here, was the most important of all the mobile phone manufacturers

with a vengeance
in a higher degree than was expected

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