Apple has announced it will lay off more than half of its workforce at its flagship factory in Shenzhen, China, in a move that would leave a lot of cash on the table.
The company has revealed its full workforce cuts at its $20 billion Mac plant in Shenzen will take effect next year, with the remaining workers laid off by September.
The cuts will affect more than 1,200 employees, and it will not be known how many will be laid off, as the company has yet to make the final decision on its workforce.
Apple said it would continue to invest in the factory as part of its long-term strategy.
“The world’s leading innovators and innovators in the hardware and software industries will continue to work at Apple,” Apple said in a statement.
“We are building a stronger and more innovative company.
We are investing more than $1 billion annually in Apple, and our workforce is the envy of the world.”
Over the next few years, we will continue working to grow our workforce and accelerate the pace of our next great product launch.
“The announcement follows an unprecedented round of layoffs earlier this year, as Apple grappled with a slowdown in smartphone sales.
Apple was one of the first tech companies to offer its employees the option of taking a 401(k) plan, but the move has angered employees, many of whom felt it was not enough.
It also comes amid a wave of layoffs at other major tech firms, with Microsoft cutting 200 people in the US and IBM reducing its workforce by half in the last year.
Apple is also looking to diversify its workforce, with Apple Pay expected to be a big part of the strategy in the coming years.
Apple has been developing a mobile payment technology that it hopes will be compatible with the Apple Watch, which is set to launch in 2018.
Apple is currently making an estimated $3.6 billion in profits from its Apple business, with sales of iPhones, iPads and Macs, and other products such as music and clothing, growing at a rate of 8.4% annually.
Apple had its biggest year in its history in 2016, with revenue of $52.6bn.