Spanish telecoms giant Telefonica will axe nearly 5,100 jobs in its home market by 2026 — roughly one third of its posts in Spain — a union source said on Monday.
The staff cuts, which were announced during a meeting between management and unions, will affect all areas of the debt-laden company’s business in Spain, the source told AFP.
Spain’s largest telecoms company employs about 16,500 people in its home country, while its global workforce is over 100,000. It is present in 12 nations including Brazil, Britain and Germany.
Contacted by AFP, Telefonica confirmed the labour “adjustment” but declined to say how many jobs it intended to axe.
A number of European telecoms firms, including BT and Vodafone, have announced job cuts this year as they grappled with intense competition in an increasingly low-cost market.
Like most of its European peers, Telefonica is struggling with heavy debt levels that have raised investor concerns over its solvency due to rising interest rates.
To reduce its debt, the company has sold off assets in recent years, including its towers portfolio in Europe and Latin America to US infrastructure specialist American Tower for 7.7 billion euros ($8.4 billion) in 2021.
Concerns over Telefonica’s debts have contributed to a slide in its share price from nearly 23 euros in 2007 to now just over four euros. The company posted a net profit of two billion euros last year. AFP