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IBM mulling up to 1,400 job cuts in France: unions

A view of IBM headquarters at la Defense in Paris, May 6, 2005. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
A view of IBM headquarters at la Defense in Paris, May 6, 2005. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer

PARIS (Reuters) - Technology company IBM is mulling up to 1,400 job cuts in France over the next two years, three trade-union representatives told Reuters on Thursday.

IBM, a bellwether for the IT industry, is in the midst of a drive to boost profits by 2015 against an uncertain global economic backdrop.

Local management has yet to officially outline whether there will be a formal job-cuts plan approved by U.S. headquarters, the union representatives said, but said the numbers had already been communicated.

"Management is set to present a plan to cut between 1,200 and 1,400 staff over the next two years," said Pierry Poquet, secretary general of the UNSA union, who said a meeting was planned for April 25.

"For now it is only a target...we've heard such announcements before but they don't always come to pass."

The CFE-CGC union's representative, Evelyne Heurtaux, confirmed the figures. "We've been told a figure of around 1,300 jobs cut over two years," she said.

IBM currently employs around 8,000 people in France, Heurtaux said.

An IBM spokeswoman could not be reached for comment.

(Reporting by Lionel Laurent and Gilles Guillaume; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

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