BYD Auto reportedly cutting 7,000 jobs to save costs
China’s pioneering electric vehicle company, BYD Co, is considering cutting as many as 7,000 jobs in its automobile unit to bring down costs, according to an unconfirmed media report on Saturday, the Global Times reported.
According to a China Business Journal report citing BYD employees, the troubled battery and electric car maker, partly owned by US billionaire Warren Buffet, is planning a massive layoff of 7,000 staff from the current 17,000 staff in its automobile division. This would come less than a month after the company reportedly cut 1,000 of its 2,600 sales staff.
The layoff was one of the issues discussed during a staff meeting on September 19, according to the report. “It’s not a secret now. A lot of staff are talking about the layoff,” an employee was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
A spokesperson for the company told the Global Times Sunday that she wasn’t aware of any such plan. “As far as I know, the only restructuring that has happened was in the sales department.”
On August 29, microblog rumors claimed that the company was cutting jobs and would dissolve the sales department, a claim denied by the company. The news came after the automobile and battery maker reported an 89 percent drop in its first-half earnings. Vehicle sales declined 23.37 percent from a year earlier to 220,131 in the first half.
The company did not admit it was laying off staff, but said it was undergoing restructuring and was transferring staff to other departments.
There has been no official statement so far, but BYD Chairman Wang Chuanfu told a shareholder meeting on September 9 that the company had made “mistakes in sales strategies,” such as having too many dealers.