Alstom, the French company known as a world leader in power transmission and rail infrastructure, says it will cut 150 jobs in Montreal over the next six months.

The jobs will be gone by November at the Alstom plant in Saint Laurent, where 260 people currently work developing communication and security systems for subway cars and trains.

Employees were notified today.

"It is unfortunately a sad event," said Alstom spokeswoman Michelle Stein, adding that many of the affected positions include engineers and project managers.

"We are trying to relocate employees where possible within Alstom."

Alstom plans to transfer most of the jobs to Europe, closer to its major customers.

"Due to greater project efficiency and proximity to a massively European customer base, it just required Alstom to adapt itself to best meet our customer needs. So if we look at the activities of the site in Ville Saint Laurent, a majority — not all — but a majority of its customers were in Europe. So just to better execute our projects and be closer to our European customers, we decided to progressively transfer some of the activities to Europe," Stein said.

STM contract not affected

About 110 Montreal employees will hang on to their jobs — support staff for the company’s North American activities will stay on, as will those assigned to work on a communications system for Montreal’s future Metro cars.

Alstom confirmed that officials at the STM, Montreal's public transportation agency, are aware of the changes.

Alstom has about 1,400 workers in Canada.