90 jobs cut by software maker


Manugistics Group Inc., a Rockville-based software company, said yesterday that it cut about 90 jobs - or 7.4 percent of its work force - and more reductions are on the way.

The announcement came as the company reported widening losses and falling revenue for its fiscal fourth quarter.

During the quarter, Manugistics made the initial cuts, lowering the number of employees to 1,133. Another 80 to 130 jobs are expected to be lost over the next two quarters, the company said.

The cuts are part of the company's effort to consolidate its U.S. operations to its Rockville headquarters, improve the way it uses office space and use product development offices in India, officials said. Manugistics said it is trying to sublease about 30 percent of its Rockville office space.

"I think it's prudent to cut costs just so that you can align your expense structure ... with the difficult environment," said Robin Roberts, an analyst for Stephens Inc., an investment banking company in Arkansas. "Having said this, there is a fine line where you can cut your costs too much and hurt revenue."

Despite Manugistics' sagging numbers, Roberts said the company's fourth quarter was strong compared with the second and third quarters.

The company reported a net loss of $111.4 million, or $1.59 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter that ended Feb. 28. The company had a net loss of $25.1 million, or 36 cents per diluted share, in the corresponding quarter of last year.

Adjusted net loss - which does not include restructuring and other charges - was $7.6 million, or 11 cents per share, in the fourth quarter. That compares with an adjusted net loss of $1.3 million, or 2 cents per share, for the fourth quarter of last year.

Revenue was $65.5 million, compared with $82.7 million in the year-ago period.

Also, Manugistics took a $96.3 million write-down during its fourth quarter for the value of goodwill associated with acquisitions.

For the fiscal year ending Feb. 28, Manugistics reported a net loss of $212.2 million, or $3.04 per share, on revenue of $272.4 million. Software revenue for the year was $74.9 million. In comparison, the company had a net loss of $115.2 million, or $1.69 per share, on revenue of $319.9 million for the fiscal year ending Feb. 28, 2002. Revenue from software last fiscal year was $129.8 million.

"Manugistics continues to garner mindshare and recognition throughout the market. We believe our product quality and our state-of-the-market products have us well-positioned as the economy rebounds," Greg Owens, the company's chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement yesterday.

The earnings were released after the close of market yesterday. Shares closed at $2.73, down 2 cents.

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