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  1. Technology
June 10, 1990


By CBR Staff Writer

As reported recently (CI No 1,441), Bradford-based VDU maker Microvitec Plc has announced a rationalisation programme under which 65 jobs have gone in areas such as materials management, production control, stores and quality assurance. Company chairman James Bailey, who arrived at the company in April, after some clever politicking by the company’s 28% shareholder Chase Advanced Technologies (CI No 1,414), says Microvitec needs a good kick up the pants, and this is what he is administering. The partnership with the US company Electrohome Inc to develop monitors, which was vaunted in March when the company issued a profits warning, has now been canned because the two could not agree on a fair profit split. Instead, the US operation is being beefed up with the appointment of Alan Melkerson as vice president of sales & marketing for North America and Microvitec Inc. Like Bailey, Melkerson comes from Gandalf Technology Inc. Robert Adams has been brought in from Northern Telecom Ltd where he was vice-president for Europe, to head Microvitec’s sales and marketing operation. Sporting a management team with such experience in telecommunications, the company is unsurprsingly keen to expand into value-added services such as video conferencing, telephony and electronic mail. Before that happens the organisation needs tighter control. Bailey says that Microvitec is paying too much for its components and that it needs to examine its distribution. It has been caught by an over-dependence on OEM contracts from companies such as British Telecom and Reuters, and is now re-assessing its distribution methods. It may decide to balance its OEM side with a direct sales force. Bailey would not be drawn as to what this would mean for the company’s 33% stake in French distributor Infoco, except to say he was in talks with the French business. He stated that Microvitec’s second half would see a return to profitability.

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