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Quantum parks 180 staff

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Data protection vendor Quantum is laying off 180 people and cutting expenses to preserve its business in the face of what it calls a global financial crisis.

Quantum supplies tape libraries and disk-based protection arrays, including its DXi de-duplicating arrays. The DXi technology has been licensed to EMC and Quantum is working with Dell to help it supply a deduplicating array. Revenues from disk-based protection products has not risen fast enough to offset declines in the tape business, which is handicapped by a debt overhang from the ADIC acquisition and falling revenues from older tape formats such as Quantum's own DLT. It is finding current market conditions tough going.

The company is laying off 8 per cent of its workforce and cutting additional expenses in an effort to save about $18m. There will be a one-time termination cost of $4.4m. It will increase investment in its DXi products and associated de-duplication and replication technology, and is partnering EMC and Dell to develop a common de-duplication architecture.

In its fiscal second quarter ended September 30 Quantum reported a GAAP net loss of $3.26m ($0.01/share), which was an improvement on the year ago quarter's $20.47m loss ($0.10/share). It also reported an encouraging 400 new customers for its DXI products introduced earlier this year.

Quantum's chairman and CEO Rick Belluzzo says there is strong demand for the DXi technology products and, hopefully, this will show up more in the next set of quarterly results. He was keen to say that Quantum is not running out of cash: "Despite these challenges, we remain in compliance with all our debt covenants and expect to be in compliance for the next twelve months." ®

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