5,200 Verizon Workers Affected By Office Closures

Around 5,200 Verizon workers will be displaced with the closure of numerous offices. The US mobile-phone carrier announced that offices in California, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania will close in May.

Although 2,200 employees will be transferred to other offices, at least 3,000 will be forced to transfer out of state or accept a buyout package. The office closures are part of a reorganization plan, which is expected to significantly reduce costs.

Representatives said offices will close on May 8. Employees in Cranberry Woods and Warrendale, Pennsylvania, Meriden and Wallingford, Connecticut, Irvine, California, Alpharetta, Georgia, and Hanover, Maryland, will be affected.

As reported by ABC News, the closures will affect 4 percent of Verizon's workforce. The carrier currently employs around 73,000. As the biggest US mobile-phone carrier, Verizon currently has 31 call centers. The closures will reduce the number to 26.

Although the carrier has faced steep competition from AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile, officials said the closures had nothing to do with the increased competition. Company officials said closing the offices is simply part of ongoing reorganization.

The displaced employees will have less than three months to decide whether to move cross country or lose their jobs.Company spokesman Paul Macchia said Verizon workers who are unwilling or unable to relocate will be offered fair severance packages. However, for many employees, the packages are simply not enough.

Verizon Communications was launched on April 3, 2000. Verizon Wireless began operations the following day. The joint venture between Atlantic Bell and GTE formed the nations largest wireless company.

The wireless company now serves 140 countries and handles an average of 1 billion phone calls per day. Verizon boasts an annual revenue of more than $110 billion and is ranked 16 on the Fortune 500.

Verizon provides 3G broadband connections to more than 290 customers and 4G broadband to more than 200 million. Company officials said they have the lowest customer turnover rate and highest profitability in the mobile industry.

Although Vodafone Group Plc. maintains a 45 percent stake in Verizon stock, a buyout is pending. The $130 billion purchase of all remaining Vodafone stock will give Verizon Communications Inc. complete control over their company.

The sale is expected to conclude next week. However, representatives said the sale has nothing to do with the impending office closures.

Beginning in May, close to 3,000 Verizon workers may be seeking employment.However, the wireless carrier said they will do everything in their power to help the displaced employees through the upheaval.

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