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In Samsung's Town in Vietnam, Workers Confident of Riding Out Note 7 Storm (reuters.com) 29

As Samsung Electronics struggles to salvage its reputation after the safety problems that have beset its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone, the South Korean company can at least bank on an army of Vietnamese workers for support, Reuters report. From the article: Tens of thousands of them are involved in assembling more than a third of Samsung's smartphones -- the Galaxy Note 7 included -- in the Pho Yen area of Thai Nguyen province, which is about 65 km north of the Vietnamese capital Hanoi. Samsung's arrival three years ago transformed it from a sleepy farming district into a sprawling industrial town. While the company expects to take a profit hit of around $5 billion from the scrapping of the fire-prone phone, 13 workers interviewed by Reuters outside the factory almost all said they are confident their employer will pull through. They also say Samsung pays well, offers good benefits and takes care of their needs. "Recalling (Note 7) doesn't mean we are unemployed or such; Samsung also makes many other phones and new models, not just the Note 7," said Nguyen Thi Hang, one of some 110,000 Vietnamese who work for Samsung Electronics across Vietnam, making it one of the nation's biggest employers.
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In Samsung's Town in Vietnam, Workers Confident of Riding Out Note 7 Storm

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  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Friday October 14, 2016 @01:17PM (#53077025)

    Is it really any surprise that 13 employees who have only been with their employer for less than three years, all of which were a boom time for the employer, would have confidence in their employer? Let's see what they have to say this time next year after their employer has had to deal with a bust year. Sure, Samsung makes other phones that still need producing, but if your facility was the one lined up to make the Note 7 while the rest of the facilities already cover production for the other phones, guess which facility gets voted "Most Likely to Be Shut Down"?

    How long until the headline reads "Samsung's Vietnamese workers caught by surprise at entirely predictable announcement of layoffs"?

    • but if your facility was the one lined up to make the Note 7 while the rest of the facilities already cover production for the other phones, guess which facility gets voted "Most Likely to Be Shut Down"?

      That's not how globalization works.

      Samsung has already been shutting down plants in Malaysia and China while at the same time opening new plants in Vietnam. If any plant is on the chopping block, it's the plants in Malaysia and China.

      And if anybody is going to be laid off, it's the older workers with families, carpel tunnel syndrome, and higher wages, not the newbies that are still ecstatic to be making $150 a week for 80 hours of work (which used to be a yearly wage three to four years ago).

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Problem is if the factory, it's plant and equipment is designed to make a note 7, it all needs to be completely re jiggered around a new phone that is now being designed as likely the note 8 as planned is dead because for marketing reasons going back to a user replaceable battery is the only thing that can save the entire Note series, they off course can just tweak the note 4 design but any way they go, they do not need production workers at that plant for quite a few months. I doubt they will wait the norm

    • What is entirely predictable? Samsung has a hugely diverse portfolio and note 7 account for one percent of smartphone production.

      The thought that this straight away puts all their jobs at risk is trigger happy at best

  • Is someone concerned that gadget buyers are going so stop sorting by price and buying the cheapest one? Until Vietnam employs enough people to create wage pressure they don't have a damn thing to worry about. Exploding batteries, shredding tires, contaminated food... none of that has ever impacted Chinese trade with the west. Can't imagine why Vietnam should worry about that all.

    Once Hillary pencil-whips TPP through however that could change; there are other disposable Asians that will breath aluminum

    • Is someone concerned that gadget buyers are going so stop sorting by price and buying the cheapest one? Until Vietnam employs enough people to create wage pressure they don't have a damn thing to worry about. Exploding batteries, shredding tires, contaminated food... none of that has ever impacted Chinese trade with the west. Can't imagine why Vietnam should worry about that all.

      Once Hillary pencil-whips TPP through however that could change; there are other disposable Asians that will breath aluminum dust 12 hours a day for even fewer pennies. That's what they really need to worry about.

      Lovely little world we have here.

      Exactly. There jobs are safe until someone cheaper comes along. Why do the think Samsung is in Vietnam instead of China or South Korea? Any product where labor is is a significant percentage the product cost and doesn't require highly skilled workers will be made at the lowest wage place that can make it at the required quality.

  • Not sure why Reuters had to go there to ask that question...

    For those who don't know the size of Samsung, the company could completely shut down and stop making phones altogether, it'd still wouldn't go down.
    They have their hands on everything from domestic appliances, to major eletronics like TVs, corporate stuff like printers, a huge part of the electronics industry is dependant on component production from Samsung, a huge part of OLED panels are made by them, and they have clients like Apple, Dell, Sony

  • I guess Note7 burns not as bad as napalm

  • You know, in all the reporting of the Samsung Note 7 *FAIL* I hadn't considered the effects on the production chain for this first-world phone. I hadn't read the story. Hadn't overheard it in conversation. It's not on TV. If I was more paranoid than usual, I might be concerned that the "sprawling industrial town" in the Pho Yen area might be some kind of planned "illuminati" grand experiment in economics. I'm really not that paranoid. Honest
    • the "sprawling industrial town" in the Pho Yen area might be some kind of planned "illuminati" grand experiment in economics.

      I'll be honest, I'm not even sure what that means.

  • Samsung has its own town? This is incredibly disturbing.

  • Surviving employees are confident that enough people were literally fired and that a layoff is unnecessary.

  • My understanding is that when you outsource to China for cheap tech assembly labor, Vietnam is so cheap that Chinese companies will turn around and send that labor to Vietnam. Or so I read on a Slashdot article some years ago.

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