Harris Interactive Restructures US Operations to Improve Profits and Promote Growth
George Terhanian to Oversee New Product Development
CFO Ronald Salluzzo Steps Down - Deborah Rieger-Paganis Named Interim CFO
US Workforce to be Reduced by 8%
ROCHESTER, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 17, 2008--Harris Interactive® (NASDAQ:HPOL) today announced actions it
has taken to realign its cost structure and pursue its strategic vision
of delivering a higher level of service, insight, and value to its
clients. "These are our first steps to reshape the company and rebuild
revenue and profits," stated Kimberly Till, President and CEO. "Going
forward, we will continue to focus our efforts on raising our level of
thought leadership by creating strong client-facing teams; leveraging
technology to increase efficiency and gain competitive advantage;
strategically expanding our global presence; and developing innovative
products to deliver deeper insights and greater value."
The Company has reorganized its US research business units into
integrated vertical teams to concentrate more resources on client
issues, deliver stronger insights, and create greater overall value. The
Company also announced the formation of centers of excellence which will
develop and deliver cutting-edge products and solutions into the
marketplace. "This streamlined structure will allow us to combine our
solutions and industry expertise to spark innovation and to better
address our clients' business issues," said Till. "We are actively
recruiting new people to augment the strong talent already at Harris and
build high-performance teams which can quickly and effectively implement
our new strategy. I am pleased with our recruiting results so far."
To further define its future vision, the Company has named George
Terhanian, currently President, Europe, as President of Global
Solutions. In this new position, Mr. Terhanian will return to the US to
oversee the centers of excellence, direct the Company's new product
development process, and manage The Harris Poll ®,
one of the world's most respected measures of public opinion. Terhanian
will be based in New York City. "I am delighted that someone of George's
intellect, expertise, and track record will spearhead the Company's
efforts in developing industry-leading products and solutions," stated
Deborah Rieger-Paganis has been appointed interim CFO of Harris
Interactive, effective December 20, 2008. She will replace Ronald
Salluzzo who will leave his position on December 19, 2008. Ms.
Rieger-Paganis is, and will continue to be an employee of Alix Partners
LLP, a global business advisory firm which has been retained by Harris
Interactive. Ms. Rieger-Paganis is a Director at Alix Partners, where
she has been employed since 2002. The Company has retained an executive
search firm to fill the position and expects to have a new CFO in place
by April 2009.
As part of the reorganization, the Company reduced its US employee
headcount by approximately 51 people, or about 8% of its total US
full-time workforce. The positions, in research, project management,
operations, marketing, sales, and corporate, were located throughout the
Company's US locations. These personnel actions are expected to save
approximately $5 to 6 million dollars annually. The Company expects that
the associated charges, all of which will result in cash payments, will
not exceed $2.4 million and be taken in the current quarter. The Company
also expects to take a restructuring charge in the current quarter of
approximately $0.5 million, in conjunction with the consolidation of
office space at its Rochester headquarters.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is a global leader in custom market research. With a
long and rich history in multimodal research, powered by our science and
technology, we assist clients in achieving business results. Harris
Interactive serves clients globally through our North American, European
and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms.
For more information, please visit http://www.harrisinteractive.com/.
Safe Harbor Statement
This media release includes statements that may constitute
forward-looking information. We caution you that these forward-looking
statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause
actual results to differ materially from those discussed. Additional
detailed information concerning a number of factors that could cause
actual results to differ is readily available in the "Risk Factors"
section of the most recent Annual Report on form 10-K filed with the
Securities and Exchange Commission pursuant to the Securities Exchange
Act of 1934.
CONTACT: Harris Interactive Inc.
Dan Hucko, 585-214-7470
SVP, Corporate Communications - Investor Relations
Source: Harris Interactive
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