In an expected move, White Pine Software Inc has given 20% of its employees pink slips, following the company’s chairman and chief executive Howard Berke out the door. He quit the Nashua, New Hampshire company for personal reasons, but the company has a problem of focus. It started in the terminal emulation business, but since 1995 has been better known as the purveyor of the CU- SeeMe video conferencing system. It has been hiring quite aggressively; two rounds of hiring in last year’s fourth quarter pushed the headcount to 160. But the company said Friday that it had been spreading our resources quite thinly, and was now going to concentrate solely on its CU-SeeMe software, MeetingPoint videoconferencing software, which is due in August, and its newer terminal emulation software, WebTerm. Some older, unspecified terminal emulation software will no longer receive the company’s full attention. White Pine will take a one-time hit for restructuring of between $650,000 and $850,000 for its second quarter ending July 4 to cover the cost of losing 26 people plus software license write-offs and other unspecified costs. The search for a new chairman and CEO goes on, with the chief technology officer, Killko Caballaro stepping in as acting president. White Pine’s numbers are due August 5.
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