Struggling personal computer maker Gateway announced Tuesday it would lay off about 5,000 employees — around one-quarter of its global work force — and close a number of foreign operations as it tries to cope with an increasingly bleak market.

About 15 percent of the company's U.S. workforce will be cut under the plan, which the company said will help it save $300 million. Gateway has 19,000 employees worldwide.

The company will also take a $475 million third-quarter charge, and close its company-owned operations in Japan, Australia, and other Pacific Rim nations.

Gateway, which has been hit by a fierce price war led by rival Dell Computer Corp., said it may pull out of Europe as well. The third-quarter charges include about $200 million for the possible exit from Europe.

The layoffs follow an earlier wave of job cuts and a management shakeup which saw the return of founder and CEO Ted Waitt to the company's helm. The company cut about 3,000 employees in January layoffs.

The company said it would close customer service and sales centers in Hampton, Va.; Vermillion, S.D.; Salt Lake City; and Lake Forest.

Gateway spokesman Brad Shaw said about five-thousand members of its global workforce of 19-thousand will lose their jobs. There were other layoffs at Gateway numbering three-thousand earlier this year, when a management shakeup also occurred.

Gateway said the layoffs also involve closing customer service and sales centers in Hampton, Virginia, Vermillion, South Dakota, Salt Lake City and Lake Forest, California.

 Reuters and the Associated Press contributed to this report.