* Cuts in addition to 17,000 job losses announced last year
* No cost to company in pulling plug on support deal
(Adds comments, background)
By Tarmo Virki
BARCELONA, Feb 29 Nokia Siemens Networks
has cut 3,500 jobs by exiting a large services deal in
Latin America, part of the telecom equipment vendor's strategy
of focusing on higher-margin businesses, its chief executive
Rajeev Suri said the latest move would be in addition to the
17,000 job cuts -- almost a quarter of the group's workforce --
announced in November.
The contract it is dropping involves low-end installations
and support, and the exit resulted in no cost to the company,
Suri said. "It was mutually agreed and the contract was handed
back to the client," he said in an interview.
Formed by Nokia and Siemens in 2007,
Nokia Siemens has struggled for profitability due to pricing
pressure from Chinese rivals and Sweden's Ericsson.
Chairman Jesper Ovesen told Reuters this month the company
would be more selective on deals and prioritise profitability.
Suri said it had decided where half the 17,000 job cuts
would be made, and has begun the process in 55 countries.
Asked about business in India, where the Supreme Court has
ordered telecoms licences issued in a 2008 sale to be revoked,
Suri acknowledged the impact on capital spending in the
"Capex in India is down a lot," Suri said, adding Nokia
Siemens was not affected as it had business there before 2008.
(Editing by David Hulmes)