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Panasonic sheds 15,000 staff – Welsh jobs at risk

Which? AV Award winner not immune to downturn
panasonic sanyo logos

Japanese consumer electronics group Panasonic is to cut 15,000 jobs and close 27 plants worldwide as part of a cost-cutting exercise.

Panasonic, which is the world’s largest maker of plasma TVs,  is reported to be expecting a net loss of £2.9bn for the financial year to 31 March, as it is hit by the strength of the yen and falling sales amid the global economic downturn.

Of the 15,000 predicted job cuts, Panasonic said that half would be in Japan, and the other half would be overseas. Panasonic employs over 1,500 staff in Wales, whose jobs may be at risk following this announcement.

The company is hoping to cut its costs by 100bn yen worldwide in the next financial year, although is in the process of buying its ailing competitor Sanyo for $9bn, as we reported last year.

Panasonic Best Buys and Which? Award

Panasonic technology products such as LCD and plasma TVs, DVD players and Blu-ray players often perform well in Which? tests and achieve Best Buy status. The company was also the the winner of the 2008 Which? Award for Best Audiovisual Brand.

Mike Briggs, Which? TV expert said: ‘It’s not surprising the downturn is hitting the consumer electronics sector hard – new TVs and electronic gadgets start to look like an unnecessary luxury when money is tight and jobs under threat.’

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