Vodafone set to axe jobs

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The Independent Online

Mobile phone giant Vodafone is preparing to cut hundreds of jobs in the UK as part of its efforts to reduce costs, it was reported today.

The company, which employs around 10,000 people in the UK, is planning to announce the measures tomorrow, according to Bloomberg.

A spokeswoman for Vodafone declined to comment on the report, which came after the group earlier this month reported a 1 per cent dip in underlying third quarter sales, despite a weaker pound helping its full-year prospects.

Vodafone has seen conditions worsen in the UK and other key markets as the recession has deepened, hitting sales of handsets.

The group, which has 19.1 million customers in the UK, posted revenues of £10.47bn for the three months to 31 December, up 14.3 per cebt with exchange rate movements not stripped out.

Vodafone - which twice scaled back revenue hopes last year as conditions worsened in the UK and other key markets - said the pound's slump had boosted full year revenue expectations.

But the group also warned of job losses as it worked to cut £1bn in costs by March 2011. At the time, Vodafone declined to reveal the number of roles that would be affected, but said it would give more details in May.

Vodafone expected to save £500m by 31 March 2010 and was trimming costs across the group, with back office, and IT operations also being looked at.

The group first unveiled plans for cost reductions last November as part of a strategy to offset the impact of the recession on consumer spending.

Vodafone has its headquarters in Newbury, Berkshire, with call centres and offices in Newark, Banbury, Theale, Trowbridge, London, Warrington, Stoke-on-Trent and Hayes.