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Zelerate Restructures, Slashes Staff

Zelerate.com, a privately held San Mateo, Calif.-based provider of open source e-commerce applications, laid off 50 of its 55 employees in a massive restructuring, but company execs say the firm is still in business.

CEO Bonnie Crater told internetnews.com that "the restructuring was yesterday. We were 55 folks and we're now at five."

Crater, who will remain as chief executive, said that the company -- formerly called OpenSales Inc. -- will be working on a software development project. Asked if it would involve e-commerce, she said it "will probably take a little different direction."

She said that like a lot of other tech companies, Zelerate.com was affected by the deferment of spending on tech projects. The company will retain its name and URL, she said.

Zelerate, which had received funding from idealab Capital Partners, idealab! itself and Sanchez Capital Partners, had marketed the Zelerate AllCommerce suite of open source, WAP-enabled e-commerce applications that provide a core set of modules to run businesses of all sizes on the Internet.

Zelerate was founded in 1998 by Rob Ferber, formerly founding vice president of technology at eToys, and Glenn Ferber (no relation to Rob), who was previously chief interactive officer at American Digital Media.

Just last January Zelerate struck a strategic alliance and referral agreement with open source instant messaging technology provider Jabber.com Inc., a subsidiary of Webb Interactive Services Inc. That same month it released AllCommerce 1.2, designed to work with the company's soon-to-be-released Zelerate Warehouse Management application for real-time fulfillment.

Zelerate product offerings are released under the nonrestrictive GNU Public License (GPL), which accelerates software development by encouraging a worldwide community of developers to test, modify and critique solutions.



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