SeaChange To Cut Global Workforce By 10%

Expects Streamlining To Reduce Annual Costs By $11M
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SeaChange International, the video software and services specialist, announced Monday that it will reduce its global employee base by 10% as part of an effort to streamline operations that will result in annualized cost savings of about $11 million when the process is completed.

SeaChange said it implemented the workforce reduction in the U.S. and, in order to comply with non-U.S. legal requirements, will implement the moves on an international basis “over the next several fiscal quarters.”

SeaChange did not disclose the number of employees that would be affected. It finished its last fiscal year, ended Jan. 31, 2014, with 723 employees worldwide, including 382 in the U.S.

SeaChange said it also expects those actions to result in restructuring and severance charges of about $1.3 million in its fourth quarter for fiscal 2015. SeaChange is scheduled to report its fourth quarter and full fiscal 2015 results in early April. 

SeaChange, which has become a software-focused company in recent years, is making these moves after building two next-gen products – Adrenalin, its multiscreen video backoffice platform, and Nucleus, a software platform for set-tops and gateways that includes optional support for the Reference Design Kit (RDK), the project being managed by Comcast, Time  Warner Cable and Liberty Global.

Those products are now deployed and in a “mature state,” said SeaChange CEO Jay Samit, who was appointed to the post in October 2014, succeeding Raghu Rau.

Samit said the streamlining was necessary in order to keep SeaChange growing, expand its toolsets and to ensure it’s in a position to innovate.

“Our industry is in a major shift,” he said, referring to a new wave of OTT products from new players and traditional MVPDs, and amid a trend that is seeing more and more programmers develop direct-to-consumer products. “All of these people need our technology.”

Of recent note, SeaChange acquired Timeline Labs last December, adding a California-based firm that helps broadcasters, cable channels and other media companies keep tabs on social trends and track audience engagement.

On the product side, the Acton, Mass.-based vendor has rolled out Rave, a platform targeted to “premium” over-the-top video that relies on Adrenalin. SeaChange also announced that Nucleus will be used by Layer3 TV, an emerging “virtual” MVPD based in Denver that’s expected to launch a product later this year.

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