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EA axing 1,000 jobs

Cuts to be made by March 31, 2009

Electronic Arts has revealed the severity of its current financial situation by announcing 1,000 jobs will be cut by March 31, 2009.

The reduction accounts for 10 percent of the company's global workforce, and will save EA around $120 million annually. Restructuring charges amount to $55-$65 million for the next "several" quarters, the publisher said.

Originally, EA had announced that only 6 percent of jobs would be cut in the near future.

Along with the job cuts, EA also said it would be closing or consolidating "at least" nine studios and publishing locations. One location, Vancouver-based Need for Speed developer EA Black Box, will be consolidated, along with its franchises, into a nearby EA studio in Burnaby, British Columbia.

Earlier this month, EA announced that it lowered fiscal 2009 guidance due to lower-than-expected sales of holiday releases.

The publisher said in a statement Friday that it will stay the course. "EA is implementing a plan to narrow its product portfolio to focus on hit games with higher margin opportunities.

"The company remains committed to taking creative risks, investing in new games, leading the industry in the growing mobile and online businesses, and delivering high-quality games to consumers."

Article supplied by Edge-Online