The pink slips will fly at SONICblue Inc. as part of a business-streamlining
The personal-video-recorder maker will cut staff by 25 percent and
consolidate several business units into its Santa Clara, Calif., headquarters by
the end of the year.
Most notable among those receiving pink slips are Roger Hackett, senior vice
president of sales, and chief technology officer Andy Wolfe.
Wolfe has often served as a spokesman for the company's legal battles with an
array of TV and cable networks over the ad-skipping and program-copying
functions of the 'ReplayTV 4500' PVR box.
The company will also move certain operations in its Scottsdale, Ariz., plant
and the audio business in its Tigard, Ore., facility to Santa Clara.
'This was a difficult decision for everyone involved, but it is an important
step in our drive toward improved financial performance,' CEO Greg Ballard said
in a prepared statement.
'We are eliminating redundancies and recognizing synergies within the
organization wherever possible, which we believe will allow us to significantly
decrease our cost structure,' he added.
The top-level departures continue a turbulent churn-out in SONICblue's
Departing this spring were chief operating officer John Todd and chief
financial officer David Sugishita. That was followed by the abrupt jettison of
CEO Ken Potashner Aug. 8 after he demanded that the company board members repay
$500,000 in personal loans. Ballard was named interim CEO that same day.
The company also faces delisting from the NASDAQ index because its share
price has sunk below $1 for more than 30 consecutive days.