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Pyrosequencing Lays off 40 Staffers; Posts Q2 Revenue Growth

NEW YORK, Aug. 7 (GenomeWeb News) - Pyrosequencing today said it has laid off 35 employees in its Uppsala, Sweden headquarters, and more will be let go before the end of the year, the company said.


The lay offs, which were announced by the company the same day it released plans to buy neighboring firm Personal Chemistry for approximately SEK89 million ($11 million), will be from the administrative and R&D. Pyrosequencing stressed that the workforce reductions will not affect the company's sales force.


The lay offs were announced together with Pyrosequencing's second-quarter earnings, which showed a slight jump in revenue amid surging R&D costs and narrowed net loss. The move will save Pyrosequencing SEK 70 million annually.


Total revenue for the period ended June 30 inched up to SEK 17 million from SEK 16.3 million year over year.


R&D spending in the quarter swelled to SEK 22.6 million from SEK 9.6 million in the year-ago period, Pyrosequencing said.


Net loss in the second quarter 2003 narrowed to SEK 42.7, or SEK 2.8 per share, from SEK 50.3, or SEK 2.37, reported in the second quarter last year. The firm attributed the reduced net loss to staff cuts it made last October. At that time, Pyrosequencing let go 23 staffers in its Uppsala headquarters. Staff were cut in order to "accelerate the route to profitability," the company said in a statement.


It said that other targets for the company's cost reduction program include administration, product development and central marketing.


Pyrosequencing said it had approximately SEK 97.1 million in cash, bank balances, and short-term investment as of June 30.


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