by Anton Shilov
11/03/2011 | 01:50 PM
Advanced Micro Devices is quietly laying off massive amounts of people ahead of a major announcement that is set to take place next week, X-bit labs has learnt. The world’s second largest designer of x86 microprocessors intends to unveil its new strategy next week that will be different from the existing one.
AMD is in process of firing from 10% to 15% of staff (up to 1500 people), primarily from marketing and public relations departments, said a person familiar with the ongoing situation, who declined to be identified as the proceedings are not made public at this time. AMD has laid off four vice presidents, including Patrick Moorhead (corporate vice president of strategy and corporate fellow), Dave Kroll (vice president of global communications) and two others.
The massive layoffs in the marketing/communications/PR departments are conditioned by several factors, X-bit labs understands. Firstly, the new chief executive Rory Read is expected to hire a new chief marketing officer shortly. Secondly, the company is about to reveal a new strategy, which will cause a number of changes within the chip designer.
AMD wants to put more efforts into consumer-oriented product designs, another person, who also asked not to be identified, with knowledge of the plans revealed. In particular, the code-named Bobcat micro-architecture, which powers the company’s popular Brazos platform, will play a much more important role in the company’s future that it was previously planned. In approximately one year the company shipped 20 million Brazos (Zacate, Ontario, etc.) chipsets for netbooks and low-power notebooks, a large number. Going forward, the firm will attempt to introduce flavours of Brazos aimed at tablets, consumer products and other devices.
What is unclear is what AMD plans to do with its high-performance and server offerings. While it is hard to expect the company to completely get rid of them, it is believed that the company will change its corporate targets and rebalance investments.
AMD did not comment on the news-story.