HP to cut 5,700 jobs in Europe, Mideast, Africa

HELSINKI (Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co HPQ.N said on Thursday it plans to cut 5,700 jobs in its Europe, Middle East and Africa region (EMEA) over the next two years.

A company spokeswoman said part of the job cuts were related to HP’s global job cut program, and some stem from a deterioration in demand.

She declined to say how many job cuts would be related to savings program, announced on May 19. HP plans to lay off roughly 6,400 staff globally as consumers and businesses cut spending on computers, printers and services.

HP competes with smaller rivals Dell Inc DELL.O and Acer Inc 2353.TW in the depressed global PC market.

It forecast on May 19 that fiscal year revenue would slide 4 percent to 5 percent.

HP said on Thursday it has submitted a proposed restructuring plan in the region to its European Works Council. It has also presented a plan to move its enterprise, storage and servers (ESS) production from Germany and Scotland to a company in the Czech Republic during 2010.

At the end of April HP had approximately 80,000 staff in EMEA.

Separately, HP chief executive Mark Hurd cited Europe as one region that would need to show clear signs of economic recovery before he could say the global slowdown was ending.

“We have seen some good signs (of recovery), but I’d like to see it across more markets to really feel as good as I think people are hoping for,” Hurd said at the Sanford Bernstein financial conference in New York, which was webcast.

He added that persistent rumors surrounding HP making big acquisitions were “a bit overblown,” although he did not say the company would refrain from making deals.

“We feel very comfortable with our organic (growth) capability,” he said. “And don’t take that statement as we are not or we are (planning acquisitions).”

Shares rose 1 percent, or 36 cents, to $34.70 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Reporting by Tarmo Virki, additional reporting by Franklin Paul in New York; Editing by David Cowell and Derek Caney