Calamos Cut Staff 7 Percent Last Quarter

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Calamos Asset Management said it cut 28 positions - or 7 percent of its work force - in the first quarter. However, the publicly traded firm says it's redeploying resources into growth businesses including institutional asset management, wealth management, global expansion and retirement plan distribution.

Calamos, based in Napierville, Ill., disclosed the staff cuts this week as part of its quarterly earnings release. First-quarter revenue dipped 4.3 percent from a year earlier to $110.7 million, while net income shrank 94 percent to $449,000, mostly due to marking down values of the company's partnership interests and offshore fund holdings.

"Our focus is to better align our expense structure with our decreasing revenues, which we believe are driven by prevailing market volatility. To do so, we completed a staff reduction of 28 associates, or 7 percent, in February 2008," Calamos said in its release. It also said Chief Executive John Calamos Sr. and Co-Chief Investment Officer Nick Calamos temporarily reduced their 2008 base salaries by a total of almost $1 million.

On a conference call, John Calamos said the company plans to keep total operating expenses in line with the 2007 total, rather than the presumably higher amounts that prevailed in the fourth quarter after Calamos added staff earlier last year.

Along with holding the line on expenses, Calamos is restructuring corporate administration under the leadership of Interim Chief Financial Officer Cristina Wasiak, who was hired from T. Rowe Price Group earlier in April.

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