Philips Electronics' Chief Jan Timmer has bought time with massive staff cuts, but it's too soon to tell whether his big new gambles on consumer electronics will lead to a real turnaround. Savings from 47,400 layoffs came to about $1 billion, more than the $530 million in net 1991 profits the company reported on Feb. 27. Philips lost $2.3 billion in 1990.
Since no big gains are expected until 1993 from new products such as digital tape cassettes and HDTV, the company will remain under financial pressure for the rest of this year. Philips may look for partners to share R&D costs.