Microsoft Cuts About 200 Marketing Employees

Published February 2, 2012 12:18AM (EST)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Microsoft Corp. said it laid off some of its marketing staff on Wednesday as part of an effort to restructure its operations.

The company did not specify how many of its 92,000 employees were let go, but a person familiar with the software maker's strategy said about 200 people lost their jobs.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to disclose details of the restructuring effort.

In a statement, the Redmond, Wash.-based company said it was taking steps to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of its marketing operations.

"Some of these changes involved the reduction of a small percentage of marketing positions to better align our resources with our business needs and clarify roles across the marketing function," the company said.

Last month, Microsoft posted flat earnings for the final quarter of 2011 and improved sales of servers, Xbox games and its Office productivity software. Revenue rose 5 percent.

The company is gearing up to release a slate of new products this year, including phones, PCs and Windows 8, an operating system that should work similarly over PCs and tablet computers. A beta version of the software is due out later this month.

Shares gained 36 cents to $29.89 in regular trading. The stock added 6 cents to $29.95 in extended trading.

By Salon Staff

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