Sony Ericsson and Toshiba issue 5,900 pink slips

Douglas McIntyre

Sony Ericsson succumbed to rapidly falling global handset sales. The number of units it shipped in the first quarter dropped 35 percent compared with the same period last year, and the joint venture posted a 293 million-euro ($382.7 million) net loss. Experts say that global handset sales could be down 10 percent this year. The Sony Ericsson numbers and figures from Nokia (NOK) indicate that the number may be too optimistic.

Sony Ericsson did what most firms do when they lose money. It fired 20 percent of it staff, or about 2,000 people.