Test-Gear Vendor Issues Pink Slips


Cable-testing-gear provider Acterna LLC became the latest vendor to feel the
economic pinch as it announced that it is eliminating about 500 positions as
part of a cost-cutting program.

The Germantown, Md.-based communications-testing-equipment company will also
consolidate its manufacturing operations and expand its use of contract

This was the latest in a series of moves to shore up Acterna's finances.

Last month, the company closed a $150 million cash tender offering for its
outstanding 9.75 percent bonds. It also closed the sale of its Airshow Inc.
business to Rockwell Collins Inc., netting $160 million in cash. That has
combined to cut its debt more than $230 million and its annual interest by about
$17 million.

'We have seen a new round of capital-spending reductions indicating that the
global telecommunications industry is still struggling to find its footing,'
president John Peeler said in a release. 'These are very difficult decisions,
but they are necessary in order to align Acterna's cost structure with the
projected growth of the industry.'

The latest reductions will require the company to take a restructuring charge
of approximately $10 million in this fiscal year.