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Sirit Lays Off Staff, Closes Plants

The RFID vendor says it is eliminating redundancy after acquiring SAMSys and TradeWind, and remains committed to UHF RFID readers for supply-chain applications.
By Beth Bacheldor
Oct 20, 2006Canadian RFID vendor Sirit announced yesterday it will lay off more than 25 percent of its staff—approximately 17 people—and close two locations in an effort to balance its cash flow.

Sirit executives say the cuts are necessary to restructure the company following its purchase of TradeWind Technologies, a developer and manufacturer of RFID readers and technology, primarily high frequency, and a SAMSys Technologies, a maker of HF and UHF RFID readers. Both acquisitions took place in April.

Norbert Dawalibi
Sirit has long been a provider of HF and UHF RFID-enabled electronic toll payment systems and automatic vehicle identification products. It bought SAMsys largely to build up a portfolio of UHF RFID products geared for supply chain operations (see Sirit to Buy SAMSys Technologies).

"SAMSys in particular had been developing a product line for a long time and investing in building a leading-edge platform for supply chains," says Norbert Dawalibi, president and CEO of Sirit. In order to continue developing the SAMsys product line and provide necessary support to SAMSys' and TradeWind's customers, Sirit retained all of the two companies' engineering and sales staffs for the past two quarters.

"We wanted to make sure we delivered on that [the SAMSys RFID] platform and make sure we kept our promise to the customers," Dawalibi says. "Having done that, we've had to rationalize our operations." Cuts are being made company-wide, although Dawalibi acknowledges that Sirit's RF Solutions division, responsible for developing and marketing RFID products for supply chains, will have more cuts. Dawalibi says the goal is to reduce duplication, but keep the best and brightest employees.

"Most of the cuts are in the RF Solutions sector, and the reasons for that is the acquisitions. We looked across the board, but at end of day, it really is taking three companies and bringing it down to one, and when you look at that most of the cuts are coming from the RF Solutions section," he explains.

Dawalibi says Sirit will continue to invest in the technology it acquired from SAMsys and TradeWind. In fact, the company's new INfinity 510 UHF reader, a Gen 2 reader that began shipping in volume last month and which Sirit got as part of the SAMsys acquisition (see Sirit Announces Infinity Interrogator), recently underwent interoperability and conformance testing and was certified by EPCglobal (see EPCglobal Awards First Gen 2 Interoperability Certifications).

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