Tag: Lays Off

Tech Giant Qualcomm Lays Off Thousands Of Americans While Simultaneously Seeking More Foreign Workers

Qualcomm Lays Off 4,500 Workers While Demanding More H-1bs – Daily Caller

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Another tech giant that says it must import foreign workers because there aren’t enough skilled American workers in the industry is laying off thousands of workers.

Qualcomm – a major producer of smartphone chips – announced last week it’s eliminating 15 percent of its workforce or about 4,500 employees, just weeks after fellow tech giant Microsoft announced a massive round of layoffs.

Both companies are top beneficiaries of the H-1b visa program, which backers say allows companies to temporarily hire foreign workers for jobs they can’t find qualified Americans workers to fill. Critics contend the program is really used to cut costs.

Microsoft and Qualcomm were in the top 15 users of H-1b visas in Fiscal Year 2013, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services data obtained by Computer World. They’re part of a major tech lobbying effort to increase the cap on these temporary workers, on the grounds there is a shortage of Americans with science, technology, engineering and math degrees.

“Qualcomm has been engaged within the technology industry in highlighting the ‘skills deficit’ in all areas of today’s workforce, especially engineering,” a spokeswoman for Qualcomm told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “This is an industry-wide problem, and we are committed to working to build the pipeline of students studying STEM fields.”

One in five of the new Qualcomm hires in Fiscal Year 2013 were foreign workers with H-1b visas, according to an analysis of SEC filings by Ron Hira, a professor at Rochester Institute of Technology who is an expert in offshoring. Those 900 foreign workers hired in 2013 triple the total number of workers Qualcomm hired in 2014.

“Qualcomm and other tech firms have argued that they turn to H-1Bs because there is a significant shortage of American talent available,” Hira told TheDCNF. “Given the recent large layoff announcements by Qualcomm, Microsoft, Intel, and Cisco, how can the tech industry continue to argue there’s a shortage of American workers?”

Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Hira also analyzed the skills of H-1b workers Qualcomm hired from Fiscal Year 2010 through 2012, and found most of the workers weren’t the highly skilled, U.S.-trained workers lobbyists imply make up the majority of H-1b holders.

Thirty-five percent of the 1,265 workers Qualcomm hired at that time held only a bachelors degree, and just 32 percent held advanced U.S. degrees. Only 44 of them held Ph.Ds from U.S. universities.

“This is very different than the carefully constructed, and misleading, narrative constructed by the tech industry that the H-1b program is primarily a vehicle for keeping people from abroad that the U.S. trained, and paid for,” Hira told TheDCNF.

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Day After Obama Mentions eBay As Example Of Booming Economy In SOTU, Company Lays Off 2,400 People

eBay Lays Off Thousands After Obama Touts Company In State Of The Union Address – Washington Free Beacon

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The POLITICO reports that President Obama, during his State of the Union address on Tuesday, gave shout outs to a number of American companies in an effort to highlight the strength of the U.S. economy. Nearly all of those companies, it turns out, are big political spenders and have contributed heavily to Democrats.

One of those companies was eBay, which Obama cited as an example of how “millions of Americans [are working] in jobs that didn’t even exist 10 or 20 years ago.” That now seems like an unfortunate choice, because less than 24 hours after Obama’s speech, eBay announced it was cutting 2,400 jobs, or about 7 percent of its workforce. Investors welcomed the layoffs, and the company’s stock jumped more than 4 percent on the news.

The company has spent millions of dollars lobbying the federal government, and has contributed mostly to Democrats over the years. Its president and CEO, John Donahoe, has donated almost exclusively to Democrats. He gave thousands to Obama’s campaign in 2012, and has contributed more than $90,000 to Democratic candidates and committees since 2006, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Here’s a picture of Donahoe leaving the White House after a meeting with President Obama last year to discuss, of all things, unemployment.

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Obama-Funded Electric Car Company Fisker Automotive Lays Off 75% Of Its Workforce, Bankruptcy Looms

Obama-Funded Electric Car Company Fisker Automotive Lays Off 75% Of Its Workforce, Bankruptcy Looms – Weasel Zippers

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Then again it’s only taxpayer money.

Via Washington Examiner:

Fisker Automotive laid off three quarters of its staff today to avoid bankruptcy while it seeks an angel with big bucks to help it become operational again.

The maker of the luxury hybrid Karma says it has “at least” $30 million in cash, and $15 million more due after settling a claim this week with its bankrupt battery maker A123 Systems, according to Reuters.

But the company owes $192 million on a $193 million Department of Energy “green” loan. It was supposed to receive $529 million, but the DOE declined to pay the full amount in May 2011 after Fisker fell behind on its targets. Executives who kept their jobs are trying to renegotiate a $10 million loan payment due on April 22.

The auto maker’s public relations team was part of the layoffs, but an outside PR firm said in a statement Fisker is still seeking a “buyer or strategic partnership” but couldn’t afford to keep on the majority of its workforce, according to Fox News.

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