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Friday, November 22, 2002

Pioneer Swings the Axe

by: Sean Hanna, Editor in Chief

The cutting at fund firms continues. Boston-based Pioneer Investments made the latest swings of the axe yesterday. The unit of UniCredito Italiano laid off 44 workers, or seven percent of its staff in a second round of cuts since the bear market started. All told, Pioneer has 650 staffers.

The cuts included the inside sales team based in Omaha, Nebraska. Those duties will be picked up by the firm's office in Medford. Pioneer is consolidating its sales support for financial advisors in the Boston suburb and expects to add 12 jobs at the location. The Omaha office will retain 58 workers after the cuts. Omaha employees will be able to apply for the jobs in Medford.

Another 27 people are being cut in Boston, Medford, and Omaha along with the inside-sales team. Those positions cover technology, administration, and sales.

The cuts ware a response to the slow economy and volatile security markets, said Dan Geraci, CEO of Pioneer. "The soft economic backdrop and continued equity market slump have put significant pressure on Pioneer's revenues. A reduction in staff is never an easy decision, but current market conditions are such that we must manage our resources prudently to meet Pioneer's objectives of growth and profitability." He added that the fund firm is seeing continued sales, though. "We are now at a point where we feel we have taken every step necessary to ensure the continuing viability of the business, but at the same time recognizing the financial pressure the industry is under," Geraci said.  

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