BlackBerry lays off 300 employees near its Waterloo headquarters

TORONTO – BlackBerry (TSX:BB) is laying off about 300 head office employees this week as part of a broader cost-cutting plan that will reduce its workforce by about 40 per cent.

The Waterloo, Ont.,-based company began handing out the notices on Monday, though the cuts have been ongoing across its global operations for several weeks.

The company plans to reduce its employee numbers by 4,500 over the coming months.

Last week, BlackBerry said it expects to face costs of at least US$400 million before the end of May 2014.

The expenses are tied to the severance payments for the layoffs, as well as reworking its smartphone lineup and other changes to its manufacturing, sales and marketing operations.

BlackBerry shares were unchanged at $8.20 near midday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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