AMD yesterday announced its biggest “optimization” ever, and unfortunately, it has nothing to do with a CPU or GPU. One of the first major decisions made by new CEO Rory Read was to lay-off 10% of AMD’s global workforce, a move that’s designed to save the company $200 million and allow a more efficient re-focus through 2012.
This move comes hot on the heels of AMD’s Bulldozer processor launch, which for all intents and purposes did not kick off nearly as well as the company would have liked. According to Read, “Reducing our cost structure and focusing our global workforce on key growth opportunities will strengthen AMD’s competitiveness and allow us to aggressively pursue a balanced set of strategic activities designed to accelerate future growth“.
For the sake of competitiveness, we do hope that things change around at AMD, at least where the CPU side of things are concerned. The GPU side is in need of little change, and it’s pretty well the company’s bread and butter at the moment.
That’s not to say that lay offs didn’t affect the GPU team, though. Some of our good friends there were given the boot, and as if we needed more doubt, one of them said this in an e-mail, “I’d say xyz will be your point of contact from now on for technical stuff, truth is, I don’t know who it will be, as to my knowledge, all of my team are gone.” – doesn’t exactly instill much confidence at the moment, does it?
The layoffs even affected some execs, such as our good friend Pat Moorhead, AMD’s VP of Advanced Marketing. Pat, like many others who were laid off, truly loved what they did, and we’re sad to see them get get let go. Many of them didn’t even know until just yesterday that they were going to be given the boot, and for some, the consequences may involve having to go back to their home country, as AMD took care of many of its employee’s US permits (AMD has brought in many employees from Canada and the rest of the world to work in the US).
Hopefully this is as bad as it gets for AMD.