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Jabil Circuit to cut 3,000 jobs worldwide

ST. PETERSBURG — Electronics manufacturer Jabil Circuit announced Wednesday that it is cutting 3,000 jobs worldwide, but none will be lost at its headquarters in St. Petersburg.

The company's reductions, forced by slumping demand for its products during a recession, amount to about 3.5 percent of a workforce of about 85,000.

Jabil officials said Wednesday that about 10 of its global plant sites will be affected, and about 10 percent of the cuts will take place in the United States. The company employs people in 20 countries.

The company expects $55 million a year in cost savings as a result of the cuts, and will take a related pretax charge of about $65 million over fiscal 2009 and 2010.

"The good news is that it's not affecting us locally," said Jabil spokeswoman Beth Walters. "That's a good thing for this community."

Walters said the company is eliminating jobs in places where demand has fallen and staffing hasn't been reduced enough to match the loss.

The St. Petersburg facility, which now employs about 1,800 people, has lost at least 253 employees since September, including its most recent layoff of 133 workers on Dec. 1.

But Walters didn't rule out the possibility of more local job losses in the future. She was reluctant to describe business in the Tampa Bay area as any better than other locations.

"We are very committed to the area, very committed to staying here," Walters said. "But I can't predict the future."

The cuts last year coincided with Jabil's agreement with the city to build a new world headquarters and add 858 high-paying jobs in exchange for $34.4 million in economic incentives. The state, county and city would pay the incentives after Jabil meets its obligations.

The Fortune 500 company's headquarters is on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N, in the Gateway area.

It promised to build and equip a new base of operations along Gandy Boulevard in north St. Petersburg, and also create manufacturing, research and development facilities, with total construction estimated at $54 million.

The state's contract with Jabil allows the company to request a one-time delay of up to two years. The company said in December it will decide whether to pursue an extension based on its performance during the next several months.

Jabil Circuit to cut 3,000 jobs worldwide 01/28/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 28, 2009 11:28pm]

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