Orange to Eliminate as Many as 2,950 Jobs in Poland Through 2015

Telekomunikacja Polska SA, Poland’s largest phone company, plans to cut as many as 2,950 jobs through 2015 to offset falling sales, intensifying competition and price regulation.

TPSA, which is controlled by Orange SA of France, agreed with unions to offer voluntary departures to employees with a tenure of more than 10 years, the Warsaw-based company said in a statement today. The reductions account for about 14 percent of the carrier’s total workforce of 20,541 at the end of September.

The cuts are part of TPSA’s plan to slash its headcount to as little as 15,000 through 2016. With its revenue falling every year since 2007, TPSA is also selling assets, including Poland’s second-biggest Web portal Wirtualna Polska SA, to focus on fixed-line and wireless businesses.

European carriers will probably shrink their workforce by 30 percent -- more than 300,000 jobs -- over a five-year period, according to an April estimate by the UNI Europa ICTS union, which represents telecommunications employees in more than two dozen countries.

Vodafone Group Plc, the region’s biggest mobile-phone operator, doesn’t rule out job cuts in Germany as it seeks 200 million euros ($275 million) in savings to offset inflation and higher costs, country head Jens Schulte-Bockum said in an interview with Rheinische Post.

TPSA shares climbed as much as 2.9 percent to 9.79 zloty and were up 2.3 percent as of 9:31 a.m. in Warsaw. That trimmed this year’s decline to 20 percent, valuing the company at 12.8 billion zloty.

Polish Spectrum

TPSA plans to spend as much as 2 billion zloty ($657 million) in a wireless spectrum auction next year. The carrier’s competitors include Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile unit and billionaire Zygmunt Solorz-Zak’s Polkomtel SA.

Staff will be offered compensation packages ranging from four times to 15 times their monthly salary, depending on seniority, TPSA said.

Provision for compensation payments will probably decrease earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization by about 200 million zloty for the fourth quarter, said Jakub Viscardi, a Warsaw-based analyst at Dom Maklerski IDM SA. TPSA said it plans to record costs from the job cuts in the current quarter.