VeriFone Holdings Inc., a San Jose, Calif.-based point-of-sale terminal maker, says the global recession forced it to trim its sales and marketing expenses by 19.7% this year compared with 2008, according to the company’s fiscal 2009 annual report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. VeriFone’s fiscal year ends Oct. 31.

In fiscal 2009, VeriFone spent $73.5 million on sales and marketing efforts, 19.7% less than the $91.5 million it spent in 2008. A VeriFone representative was not available for comment.

The bulk of the reduced spending came from $10.4 million in personnel cuts and the reduced use of outside sales and marketing services, VeriFone says. Eliminating some spending on travel, trade show exhibiting, event hosting and marketing communications netted another $5.3 million in savings, the filing shows.

The annual report also shows that VeriFone counted 342 sales and marketing employees at the end of October. A year earlier, the tally was 325.

In the filing, VeriFone says it expects sales and marketing expenses in 2010 to “grow modestly as we address business opportunities in certain markets where we believe economic growth and demand are relatively less affected by the global recession.”

Earlier this month, Douglas G. Bergeron, VeriFone CEO, said the U.S. taxi market would be one of those markets (see story) (http://www.paymentssource.com/news/VeriFone-conferencecall-revenue-3000068-1.html). VeriFone is expanding its taxi sales staff and is turning its attention to national sales of terminals designed for cabs, Bergeron said, noting between 30% and 35% of taxi fares are paid electronically.

“The consumer studies we’ve seen suggest that once a rider uses a credit card twice, he’s very unlikely ever to go back to cash,” Bergeron told analysts during a Dec. 14 conference call.

 

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