Outdoor apparel company Quiksilver is to cut 200 jobs as it restructures its Americas business in a bid to meet the challenge of the economic downturn.

The measures, which involve the redundancy of 150 workers currently in post, are expected to reduce expenses in the Americas region by more than 10%, equivalent to about US$40m a year.

The job losses account for about one-third of the cost reductions.

Quiksilver, which also announced a range of cost-cutting measures last year, expects to incur a charge of about $5m in its first fiscal quarter.

"Beginning last year, we initiated a process to reduce our corporate overhead and cut spending in each of our regions," said Robert B McKnight Jr, chairman, president and CEO.

"While these measures improved our overall cost structure by more than $35m, our commitment to further streamlining the business and the continued decline in the retail environment make additional steps necessary."

The announcement comes after Quiksilver revealed details of further pay cuts for members of its executive management team in an SEC filing last week.