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Avon to Slash 1,500 Jobs, Leave Two Markets

Vietnam, South Korea being left behind


Avon Products Inc. (NYSE: AVP)In a cost-cutting move, struggling cosmetic retailer Avon (NYSE:AVP) announced that it’s slashing 1,500 jobs and leaving two Asian markets.

The cosmetic company — best known for its army of individual sales reps — announced that it would cease operations in South Korea and Vietnam. The company is also planning to save by eliminating 1,500 jobs around the world. By cutting its work force and abandoning the Asian markets, the company hopes to save $400 million by 2015.

The two moves come during hard times for Avon. The firm is struggling, beset by poor exchange rates, weak performance in some major markets and higher costs. AVP shares have fallen more than 35% since peaking in early April.

Avon announced in November that the firm would begin a cost-cutting effort to turn things around.

More cost-savings moves are expected as the current cuts account for about 20% of the firm’s savings goal. The company announced that it would take a $50 million-$60 million charge in the current quarter related to the cost-cutting. Another $30 million-$40 million charge is expected in 2013.

Avon also cut its dividend by 74% last month.

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