GE to shed 148 jobs from west California digital division



U.S. industrial giant General Electric (GE) will cut 148 jobs from its digital division headquartered in San Ramon, about 55 km east of San Francisco on the western coast, media reports said Wednesday.

The latest retrenchment will mainly affect employees at GE's San Ramon division, or GE Digital, that creates software products aimed at optimizing corporate operations.

Disclosing the job cuts, the Employment Development Department of California said the measure will come into force on Jan. 6 next year.

The company's new Chief Executive Officer John Flannery has decided to downsize or sell off the company's profit-losing unit in the East Bay area.

GE Digital spokesperson Amy Sarosiek told local media that the drastic change in operation is a reflection of refinement of strategy, which will ultimately help the company operate more efficiently and reduce costs.

Flannery has halved GE's quarterly dividend payment from 24 cents a share to 12 cents.

The GE Digital headquarters in San Ramon's Bishop Ranch business park was set up only two years ago to boost the East Bay's tech-industry.

GE, with a history of 125 years, currently employs about 2,000 people in GE Digital headquarters in San Ramon, and 26,000 people worldwide.