MarchFirst begins another round of layoffs

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Internet consultancy MarchFirst began another round of layoffs Jan. 5, although a spokeswoman for the Chicago-based company, declined to give any details, saying only that the layoffs were "ongoing." The company is still trying to reach a cost-cutting goal that was not achieved with an initial round of staffing cuts late last year, she said. In November, MarchFirst laid off about 1,000 employees, or about one-tenth of its work force, as part of an initiative to cut costs and streamline operations. The company said these staffing cuts would allow it to save about $100 million annually, beginning in 2001. At present, the company employs about 8,000 people worldwide. MarchFirst shares have plummeted from a 52-week high of $56.50 to a low of $1. The stock closed Jan. 5 unchanged at $1.53. The company recently received a $12 million interest-free loan from existing investor Microsoft and a $150 million investment from equity firm Francisco Partners.

Copyright January 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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