Microsoft handed out pinkslips to 2,100 employees Thursday as part of the company’s plans to reduce its workforce by 18,000 through the end of the year.
Those impacted by the cutbacks this week involved staff across all of its divisions, including Santa Monica-based Xbox Entertainment Studios.
Microsoft, in July, said it would wind down XES, run by Nancy Tellem and Jordan Levin, so that the Xbox division could focus more on videogame franchises. It recently acquired “Minecraft” maker Mojang for $2.5 billion.
As XES readies to shutter, Tellem and Levin have been setting up already developed projects around town, including “Humans” with AMC, a series which is a co-production with the U.K.’s Channel 4 and is set to debut next year. Another, a Steven Spielberg-produced series based on the “Halo” games, is finalizing a deal with Showtime.
While Microsoft declined to disclose just how many employees were being let go from the production shingle, XES already had begun laying off executives and other staff in July.
Most of the overall cuts — representing about 14% of its workforce — were expected to come from Nokia, the mobile devices maker Microsoft acquired in April for $7.2 billion. About 12,500 positions were to come from that group.
“As we announced July 17, Microsoft is reducing our overall workforce by approximately 18,000 positions over the course of the year, with about 13,000 reductions initiated in July,” Microsoft said in a statement. “We’ve taken another step in that process today, with the elimination of about 2,100 jobs which are part of the overall 18,000 number announced in July. The reductions happening today are spread across many different business units, and many different countries. We will continue to go through this process in the most thoughtful manner possible, with the deepest respect for affected individuals and recognition of their service to the company. We will offer severance to all affected employees.”