In a move by new chief executive Stanton Sloane to gain efficiencies, Comtech Telecommunications Corp. is fusing its Germantown, Maryland, subsidiary with its unit in Tempe, Arizona, the maker of telecommunications transmission equipment announced.
Combining the two business units -- Comtech EF Data in Tempe and Comtech Mobile Datacom in Germantown -- will not affect the company's Long Island operations, where more than 100 employees work, said Michael Porcelain, senior vice president and chief financial officer. He said operations will continue in Germantown and Tempe.
"We'll try to get synergies going forward," he said in a telephone interview.
Sloane, who replaced longtime executive Fred Kornberg in January as president and CEO, has sought to cut costs at the Melville-based company, and Porcelain said that effort is ongoing. Kornberg had been chief executive and president since 1976.
Though revenue edged up to $347.2 million in 2014, sales remain far below the $612.4 million notched in 2011. Comtech shares have declined more than 17 percent in the last 12 months, closing Wednesday at $29.13, down 14 cents.
John Branscum will oversee the newly combined units, and also will remain in charge of another subsidiary, Santa Clara, California-based Comtech Xicom Technology Inc. He succeeds Robert McCollum, president of Comtech EF Data, who will retire on July 31, the company said in a news release. Sloane had been serving as acting president of Comtech Mobile Datacom.
Porcelain said the Tempe unit has been making hardware for the unit in Germantown and that uniting management creates a "more seamless and more integrated" approach favored by U.S. government customers.
In March, the company announced plans to increase marketing and reduce staffing "to a level we believe is commensurate with current business activity," but did not provide details. The company had about 1,069 employees as of July 31, 2014, and Porcelain said the company has not updated that figure.
Foreign customers account for about 58 percent of Comtech sales, with the remainder coming from the U.S. government (30 percent) and other U.S. customers (12 percent).