IBM moving hundreds of computer manufacturing jobs to Mexico - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

IBM moving hundreds of computer manufacturing jobs to Mexico

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- A shock for people working at IBM's sprawling campus in northwest Rochester Tuesday, as IBM executives shared a decision with workers that hundreds of manufacturing jobs are moving to Guadalajara, Mexico.

IBM is a global computer giant with twelve research laboratories around the world and manufacturing and support plants and offices in dozens of countries.  In recent years, there have been other such "resource actions" with the company shifting jobs to China, India or other parts of its "smarter planet." 

Scott Cook, an IBM spokesman based in Chicago, confirmed the Rochester cuts to KTTC NewsCenter and says the decisions announced Tuesday are simply about creating the "best possible infrastructure" for the company.

IBM told its Rochester employees that manufacturing of Power Pure Systems and Pure Flex systems are both moving to Guadalajara, Mexico.  In addition, the used and refurbished power system manufacturing is going to be shifted to the IBM complex at Poughkeepsie, New York.  These production lines are for mid-range computers for business applications.

The company will not divulge numbers of workers negatively affected at the Rochester manufacturing site, but sources estimate that 200 employees might be impacted when the work they do in Rochester moves south of the border.

Workers were told that IBM wants to start manufacturing the first product out of Guadalajara in the third quarter of this year, but Cook says the shift of jobs will not be complete until mid-2014.

The staff of Workforce Development Center, Inc. in Rochester had not heard of the IBM decision as of Tuesday afternoon.  This is just the latest of downsizings at IBM Rochester, a massive complex that has been a backbone of IBM research and manufacturing over the past 50 years, with 3.1 million square feet on the main campus, more than half the size of the Pentagon.

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