MOUNTAIN VIEW -- Security software company Symantec said Thursday that it is cutting jobs as part of a reorganization, the third large Silicon Valley technology company to announce layoffs in less than a month.

In a statement to AllThingsD, which originally reported the layoffs, Symantec spokeswoman Ellen Hayes confirmed the move. "Symantec is in the midst of a company-wide transformation. As part of this effort, we are engaged in a company-wide reorganization. As a result, some positions are being eliminated," she wrote.

The statement did not confirm the number of layoffs, which AllThingsD reporter Arik Hesseldahl said could be as many as 1,700, but did say that the move would take place in stages, with notifications beginning this month. In its May annual report, Symantec claimed 21,500 workers, so 1,700 layoffs would cut about 8 percent of the company.

Symantec's reorganization follows 900 layoffs announced by Sunnyvale data-storage company NetApp in late May, and 520 layoffs by San Francisco social-gaming company Zynga earlier this month. While Zynga has struggled to achieve consistent revenues and profitability, Symantec and NetApp have been able to produce strong financial results: Symantec was the 12th largest Silicon Valley technology company for calendar year 2012, with sales of $6.8 billion, and NetApp was directly behind at 13th with revenues of $6.3 billion.

Tech layoffs are occurring outside Silicon Valley as well: IBM began a round of layoffs Wednesday that will affect 1,300 workers, an employee group told Bloomberg News.


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Symantec CEO Steve Bennett said in the company's third-quarter earnings conference call in January that he expected to make "a reduction of the workforce," including "fewer executives and middle management positions." The former Intuit (INTU) CEO, who took over Symantec in July of 2012, explained then that Symantec had become "underperforming" and its employees were "a bit demoralized."

Offcials reiterated plans to reorganize the company in the recent annual report: "By the fall of 2013, we expect to reduce the number of management layers from our existing structure," it read.

Staff writer Steve Johnson contributed to this report. Contact Jeremy C. Owens at 408-920-5876; follow him at Twitter.com/mercbizbreak.