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Optical/IP

Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line?

SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE: SBC) said this week it is upset that so many jobs are lost due to the fact that competitive companies are sharing its lines. "Companies that rely on reselling SBC's services do not invest in the local phone network, create local jobs or bring innovation to the local phone market," the company groused in a press release.

Those awful competitors! How dare they?!

Would SBC prefer that all of its competitors go away? Would it prefer that no one were using -- and paying for -- its lines? Can SBC throw stones because it never cuts jobs?

SBC's CEO Ed Whitacre Jr. said last week that SBC is going to cut more jobs soon, though he didn't give specific details. The company now has about 175,000 employees, 29,500 (14%) fewer folks than it employed as of December 1999, the year when dotcom startups and CLEC competitors were even thicker on the ground.

Be they telephone lines or payroll checks, SBC evidently doesn't like to share. But enough about them. Let's take a moment and review some of the most interesting hirings and firings of the last few days:

  • Sprint Corp. (NYSE: FON) says it needs to outsource some of its software application development and support to IBM Global Services and EDS Corp (NYSE: EDS). The five-year contract will save Sprint some $150 million, but it also puts several hundred employees out of jobs. Our sister site, Boardwatch, has the full story (see Sprint Springs Outsourcing Deals).

  • Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA) is letting its employees volunteer for another round of layoffs, which will happen early next month (see Tellabs Seeks Layoff Volunteers). CEO Michael J. Birck told the Daily Herald, a suburban Chicago newspaper, that he wasn't sure how many would be let go in the next round of cuts, but that the number would have to be "much higher than 100." Tellabs workers who take the buyout package will be out the door by October 3.

  • James Hamilton has left Efficient Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: EFNT) to take the helm at TippingPoint Technologies Inc., a network security company. Hamilton has held the top job at Efficient less than two years; his appointment at the Siemens subsidiary began in early 2002. Before joining Efficient Networks in 1999, Hamilton led the sales efforts of Picazo Communications, a computer telephony startup.

  • Optiwave Corp. has hired Terry Cantrell as its VP of sales. Cantrell formerly worked with Anritsu America and EXFO Electro-Optical Engineering Inc. (Nasdaq: EXFO; Toronto: EXF). Headcount also loved his guitar work with the delightfully grungy Alice in Chains. Oh, wait. That was Jerry Cantrell. Sorry.

  • Lynn D. Anderson, Corvis Corp.'s (Nasdaq: CORV) CFO, is also handling CFO duties at Broadwing Inc., Corvis's service provider subsidiary, a source close to Broadwing says. A Broadwing representative couldn't comment specifically on Anderson, but the spokesperson did indicate that Broadwing CEO Mark Spagnolo has made a few changes to the management team and will share the details of the new appointments soon.

  • Access startup Entrisphere Inc. has shaken up its sales department, sources close to the company say. They say VP of sales Jerry Jackson has left and his duties have been absorbed by Peter Bourne, the company's VP of marketing. Entrisphere, which took care to publicize the hiring of its CEO, now is "not engaging the press in terms of revealing corporate or product issues," according to a spokesman.

  • Riverstone Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: RSTN) has confirmed that its VP of marketing, Andrew Feldman, left the company several weeks back. Headcount sources say Feldman moved to Force10 Networks Inc.

    Here's a summary of other industry appointments (and disappointments) from the past several days:

    That's all for now. We're always looking for some good clean dirt for the next edition of Headcount, so send your tips to [email protected]. We promise to preserve jobs by not sharing our best one-liners with competitors.

    — Phil Harvey, Senior Editor, Light Reading
    www.lightreading.com
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    gea 12/4/2012 | 11:25:19 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? "Lynn D. Anderson, Corvis Corp.'s (Nasdaq: CORV - message board) CFO, is also handling CFO duties at Broadwing Inc., Corvis's service provider subsidiary, a source close to Broadwing says."

    Holy crap. That's an unKosher set of relationships for sure...CFO of Broadwing and Corvis at the same time? Bet Anderson plays a mean shell game...
    ksig25 12/4/2012 | 11:25:19 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? Want to guess where Lynn was before Corvis???? He was the CFO at Optical Capital Group for a short time before taking over the CFO role at Corvis......he's been passed around like a bad joint! lol
    whyiswhy 12/4/2012 | 11:25:13 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? Clearly all financial resources are going to be channeled into Broadwing...

    JMHO

    -Why
    midyatspor1000 12/4/2012 | 11:25:09 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? Lightmaster,

    I think you should get your facts right about revenues from Broadwing, here is the paragraph from 10K:

    "In 2000, Broadwing agreed to purchase at least $200 million of our products and services as part of a multi-year purchase agreement. Since successfully completing field trials in July 2000, Broadwing has deployed a wide range of our optically optimized networking products, including our all-optical switch, to create a national all-optical network that has been in service for over two years. On June 13, 2003, Corvis Corporation purchased most of the assets and certain liabilities of Broadwing. As a result of this transaction, there will be no future equipment revenues from sales to Broadwing. "

    As you see Revenues will not show 100% for Corvis, it will be 0% even though Broadwing may buy corvis' stuff.


    lightmaster 12/4/2012 | 11:25:09 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? This is the ultimate shell game. Corvis sells equipment to Broadwing. It shows up as 100% revenue for Corvis, but is capitalized and the expense spread over years by Broadwing. All perfectly legal. Normally this is not an issue as the service provider and equipment vendor are not intertwined.

    One needs to watch cash flows carefully in this situation so as not to be fooled by combined revenue numbers.

    P.S. Anyone who knows Huber knows that financial resources are NOT going to be channeled into Broadwing. Broadwing is a method of justifying and financing the equipment sandbox to play in.
    sevenbrooks 12/4/2012 | 11:25:06 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line?
    Rumor is that Valo has closed it doors.

    seven
    Shazbot 12/4/2012 | 11:25:05 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? Even worse, they keep around the yes-men clip art driven marketing VPs that also brought down the CEO's last two companys-Basically the people who did all the work and generated the second round of funding are dismissed as soon as the quasi-developed product is in semi-production.

    At my Ex-Company (who got some recent mentions in reader talk about optical switches), one month they bragged how they had 18 months of runway and lots of cash in the bank at an all-hands after the first product shipment, and the next month, they released 20% of the work force, all hands-on engineers who had been there from the beginning and actually built the working hardware. They they did it again 2 months later.

    I can only wish them the best, that they be acquired and rescued by some industry powerhouse like Corvis or Ciena that will make them all rich (LOL) because I sure do not see any real swithc customers out there.
    mtd 12/4/2012 | 11:25:05 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line?
    >>Gone are many of the early engineers, replaced by sales and support. I find this in conflict with what I thought was an unwritten contract in the valley, that those contributing to the company's early success would play a part in its continued growth.

    That is correct. After initial milestones are met, most all engineers who question the management(yes sir, yes sir) are mostly booted out. It is also mostly because there is no accountability for faulty design. Sometimes, I wonder when and how the end will come for these companies.
    alligator 12/4/2012 | 11:25:05 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? Following the postings over the last few months, I'm beginning to notice a trend... Startups, and not only those staffed at the peak of the bubble, now find it acceptable to readjust staffing after certain HW/SW milestones are met. Gone are many of the early engineers, replaced by sales and support. I find this in conflict with what I thought was an unwritten contract in the valley, that those contributing to the company's early success would play a part in its continued growth. Or, have times changed to the extent (i.e., offshore development) that the former ethic no longer holds, and if so, what is to replace it?
    romeo-foxtrot 12/4/2012 | 11:25:04 PM
    re: Headcount: Buddy Can You Share a Line? I have seen several start-ups actively discuss plans to downsize engineering once their 1st release of a product is done, and while they invest in sales & marketing heads and seek to generate revenues.

    The engineering folks are definitely getting the shaft these days, and are being increasingly considered as temporary "job based" labor that can be cut down once the job is done.

    I would never leave a large company today to go to a start-up - way too much risk with way too little return.
    Page 1 / 7   >   >>
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