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Dell drops, cuts work force

Dell is executing one of the largest rounds of layoffs since last year as the international company reduces its sales and support work force by 10 percent. The renowned company said it would cut 1,200 permanent jobs, 900 of them at a call center in Canada, and it will close its call center in Edmonton, Alberta by the end of July.

The computer maker also abandoned plans to expand the Ottawa center and Oklahoma City.

The layoffs are part of a move to simplify the business and increase efficiency, said Dell spokesman David Frink. He said the Round Rock-based company would provide an update on its plans when it reports the latest financial results Feb. 28.

Last year, Dell closed a consumer sales center in Roseburg, Ore., and another near Waco to eliminate 480 jobs. It also laid off 250 workers at a Nashville, Tenn., facility.

After the Edmonton center closes, Dell will have about 25 call centers worldwide, include in Round Rock, Nashville, Oklahoma City, Ottawa, and Twin Falls, Idaho.

Dell also announced this week it would close 140 kiosks, mostly in shopping malls, where customers could examine and order computers but not buy them. The international company is instead striking deals with more retailers to sell computers to consumers and other retail outlets.