European smart card vendor Gemalto is cutting 409 jobs at its operations in France, including 362 positions at its manufacturing plant in Orleans which is being shut down.
Gemalto says it has informed employee representatives that it will stop manufacturing in Orlean by the second half of 2008 and move production to other areas of France and Western Europe.
The vendor says the move is designed to reduce central industrial costs and make its manufacturing centres more specialised. Gemalto's Normandy site will now manage the production of SIM cards for Western Europe while its Gemenos operations will manage embedding for French banking cards.
As well as the positions lost at Orleans, the vendor it cutting 47 other jobs in France.
Gemalto, which was created last year by the merger of smart card vendors Gemplus and Axalto, saw full year profits plummet in 2006 and has been trying to cut costs around the world, targeting China, the US, Mexico, the UK, South Africa and Russia.