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Microsoft to Eliminate ‘Small Percentage’ of Marketing Jobs

Microsoft Corp., the world’s largest software maker, said it’s eliminating a “small percentage” of marketing jobs as part of a previously reported reorganization of the department.

“Given the rapid changes in technology and the shifts in how our customers connect with Microsoft, great marketing is more important than ever to Microsoft’s future success,” the company said in an e-mailed statement. “We’re taking steps to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of our marketing.”

The cuts follow a marketing review aimed at reducing overlapping jobs and better responding to competitors like Apple Inc. and Google Inc., people with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg last month.

Microsoft, based in Redmond, Washington, spent $13.9 billion on sales and marketing in fiscal 2011, a 5.5 percent increase from the previous year. Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer, who named Chris Capossela as his new marketing chief last year, didn’t think the company was getting enough return on those marketing dollars, the people said in January.

The software maker had 25,000 sales and marketing workers as of June 30, the end of its fiscal year, the company said in a filing, without specifying how many focused on marketing. The company had a total of about 90,000 full-time employees.

Microsoft shares rose 1.2 percent to $29.89 at the close in New York. The stock has gained 6.8 percent in the past 12 months.

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