After MetroPCS merger completes, T-Mobile USA plans layoffs

Summary:As T-Mobile and MetroPCS prepare to merge after leaping over a significant US Department of Justice hurdle, T-Mobile is planning a number of cuts at its company's Washington-based headquarters.

T-Mobile USA plans to cut a large number of staff at its corporate headquarters in Bellevue, Seattle, once the MetroPCS merger completes, according to sources.

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Image: T-Mobile

Speaking to The Seattle Times, T-Mobile employees said that more than 100 people in marketing and other divisions will be cut later today. The sources said that a number of conference rooms at the company are reserved for "integration" meetings.

During 2012, around 4,200 jobs were cut across the company, with most from the company's call centers around the United States. Most of these cuts were expected to be refilled as the firm built up its business sales unit.

But during this time, its headquarters has been mostly ring fenced from the wider cuts. Now, it seems, the cuts dished out by head office are coming back to bite it where it hurts.

It's not all that surprising, considering the company has had a rough few quarters. During T-Mobile's third-quarter earnings in November last year, the company lost half a million post-paid contracts, a decline of 7 percent on the same quarter a year ago. The company's revenue was down by 6 percent year over year to $4.9 billion.

Unions have, however, warned that job cuts were inevitable, regardless of the company's financial downturn.

There has been concern, notably the Communications Workers of America, that the deal between the fourth and fifth largest cellular networks in the US would lead to job cuts across the two companies. The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was asked by Congress [PDF] to put measures in place to ensure that jobs are not lost in the deal.

Yesterday, the US Department of Justice let a 30-day period of waiting expire — a requirement under US antitrust law — meaning that the feds would not challenge the deal .

However, the FCC also has to approve the deal, along with the Committee on Foreign Investments (CFIUS), and, above all else, MetroPCS shareholders, who are set to vote on the deal in mid April.

We've put in questions to T-Mobile, but did not receive a reply outside US business hours.

Topics: Security, Networking

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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