Bluetooth chip maker CSR cuts jobs

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The Independent Online

The bluetooth micro chip manufacturer CSR is to cut up to 50 jobs in the UK, as it revealed that a slump in demand for wireless devices may case its fourth quarter revenue to tumble by more than 25 per cent.

Joep van Beurden, the chief executive of CSR, said that between 40 and 50 UK jobs were "at risk", along with an unspecified number in other countries, as part of its plans to cut costs by $20m (£12m) in 2009 "across the board". It will take an axe to other areas including research and development. "We want to make sure we are prepared to weather the storm if there is a prolonged downturn," said Mr van Beurden.

For its fourth quarter of 2008, CSR said it expected revenues to be in the region of $140m and $160m, compared with the market consensus of $190m.

Mr van Beurden said: "This time of year we see quite a lot of order activity for Christmas and this year it is significantly less and our end customers are clearly being affected by this." CSR manufacturers Bluetooth chips for devices, such as mobile phone headsets and computer game consoles. Mr van Beurden said: "[With] many of these products, if customers feel a pinch in their wallet, they look at these products first and say, 'I should postpone the purchase of that device'."

However, shares in CSR rose by18.25p to 182p yesterday after sales for the three months to 26 September rose by 9 per cent to $205.5m, in line with expectations. Its gross margins fell to 44.5 per cent in the third quarter, compared with 48.2 per cent in the same period last year. CSR's operating profit fell by 44 per cent to $30.9 million for the three months to 26 September, year on year.