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Software company drops staff

By Chris Hutching

Friday 22nd August 2003

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Jade Software has followed up on its retrenchment announcement last week by making 71 staff redundant.

The company has had a difficult time in a stagnant, cautious IT market, it said earlier this month when announcing restructuring initiatives that included cost cutting and recapitalisation efforts.

As reported in the August 8 issue of The National Business Review, the company ­ valued at between $100 million and $150 million earlier this year ­ has also canned its long-awaited public float as a sharp deterioration in its balance sheet this year means ordinary sharemarket investors and analysts would shun a share offering.

A forewarning of the dramatic turnaround at Jade became apparent a few weeks ago when senior marketing executive Peter Helms resigned ahead of new chief executive Rod Carr taking over.

Mr Carr, formerly deputy-governor of the Reserve Bank, was brought in to shake up the organisation.

Mr Carr said at the time that he would be consulting staff about what positions should be made redundant, with the aim of making cost savings of about 25%.

The company said in an announcement on Monday that it had issued notices of redundancy to 71 of its 383 staff and had made redeployment options available to 10.

Most of the 52 staff members affected are in Christchurch, with four in other New Zealand offices, 10 in Australia, four in the UK and one in the US, the company said.

Confirmation last week of scoping studies for multi-million-dollar projects in the health and education sectors was evidence of the faith customers had in Jade, its products and its people, Mr Carr said.

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