Most Motorola Beijing Workers Accept Sweetened Layoff Deal

Almost all the laid-off staff at Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. in Beijing have accepted the manufacturer’s termination package, Will Moss, the company’s Asia director of communications said today.

More than 200 workers in Beijing had protested against the layoff of employees, Sina.com.cn reported on Aug. 17. The company did not “fairly” negotiate a layoff deal with them, Sina.com.cn cited protesters at the scene as saying.

The job cuts are part of a plan announced by Google Inc. (GOOG) earlier this month to cut 20 percent of the staff at its Motorola Mobility unit, or about 4,000 jobs globally. Google, owner of the world’s most-popular search engine, said in a filing on Aug. 14 that the move was to return Motorola’s mobile devices unit to profitability. Google completed the purchase of Motorola Mobility for about $12.5 billion in May, to boost its patent portfolio and step up competition with Apple Inc.

“Almost all the employees have accepted the current offer,” Beijing-based Moss said in a telephone interview today. “We’re in pretty good shape in coming into agreement with the employees.”

All but one of the workers terminated agreed to a sweetened offer by Motorola Mobility, Moss said. He declined to comment on how many staff were laid off. Motorola’s job cuts are expected to affect 700 people in China, the country’s official Xinhua News Agency reported today.

Employees were offered a one-time payment for housing subsidy assistance, and the company would compensate employees for un-used annual leave in cash, at a rate of 300 percent the staff member’s hourly income, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Liza Lin in Shanghai at llin15@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Monahan at amonahan@bloomberg.net

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