5 Companies That Had A Rough Week

The Week Ending Nov. 7

This week's roundup of companies that had a rough week includes layoffs at a major wireless provider amid growing customer losses, the departure of a Cisco executive following problems with the company's Invicta systems, more bad news about Home Depot's security breach, the defection of a key executive from a leading distributor, and questions about the future of TV-on-the-Web company Aereo.

Sprint Cuts 2,000 Jobs As Customer Losses Mount

Wireless carrier Sprint this week launched a cost-cutting plan that includes eliminating roughly 2,000 jobs as the company loses subscribers to Verizon, AT&T and other rivals.

This week's layoffs, following an earlier round of cuts back in March, come just three months after former Brightstar CEO Marcelo Claure took the reins as Sprint's CEO. Monday Claure said these latest layoffs are the first of several steps he plans to take to curb Sprint's mounting financial and customer losses.

Cisco Invicta Sales Chief Exits Amid Shipment Delays

The fallout from problems Cisco has been having with its Invicta solid state storage product line continued this week when Ryan Snell, a top sales executive for the Invicta business unit, confirmed that he had departed the company. Snell joined Cisco last year when the vendor acquired storage vendor Whiptail for $415 million.

Cisco has struggled to get its UCS Invicta flash storage system to market. In September the company halted all shipments after some customers reported problems with deploying the product. While Cisco promised then to resume Invicta shipments in October, only the stand-alone version has started shipping again.

Home Depot Says Security Breach Also Netted 53 Million Email Addresses

The previously disclosed security breach at Home Depot is worse than initially thought. This week the home improvement retailer said that in addition to gaining access to information from as many as 56 million credit cards between April and September this year, hackers also stole about 53 million customer email addresses, according to a Reuters story.

Thursday Home Depot said hackers used a third-party vendor's network credentials to enter the company's network and deploy malware on store self-checkout systems. The company said the stolen email files did not have passwords, payment card information or other sensitive personal information. But the theft, in addition to giving Home Depot a public relations black eye, is also costing the company an estimated $62 million to clean up.

Distributor Ingram Loses Key Exec To PCM

Distributor Ingram Micro lost a key executive to solution provider PCM this week. PCM hired Jay Miley, vice president and general manager of Ingram's Advanced Technology division, as its new president effective Dec. 1.

Miley has been in his current role at Ingram since January 2013, managing the distributor's multibillion-dollar Advanced Technology division. He has worked at Ingram since 1994, holding such posts as U.S. vice president of business management.

Ingram's loss is PCM's gain. As president Miley will be responsible for PCM's day-to-day operations, driving strategic initiatives, managing cost structures and growing sales and gross profits.

TV-On-The-Web Company Aereo Running Out Of Options

Aereo, the company that offered consumers the ability to stream network television on their PCs and tablet computers, is closing its Boston office and laying off 43 employees -- most of its remaining staff.

Aereo suffered a serious blow in June when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the company's re-transmitting of broadcasters' signals constituted copyright infringement. Since then the company has failed to raise additional financing and last month a federal court in New York issued an injunction barring its transmissions. While New York-based Aereo still exists as a corporate entity, its Boston office was its biggest operation and held nearly all its engineering staff, raising serious questions about its ability to continue.