03.08.2011 02:00 PM
Harris Realigns Its Business Segments

Harris Corp. wants to expand further into areas like cloud computing, sports and entertainment, restaurants and retail. That’s one of the reasons for the “strategic realignment” it announced today that affects its broadcast employees, among others.

It created a segment called Harris Integrated Network Solutions, which includes not only the Broadcast Communications business (which makes the radio and TV equipment familiar in our industry) but also Harris IT Services, Harris CapRock Communications, Healthcare Solutions and Cyber Integrated Solutions. All of those except broadcast formerly were part of another segment, Government Communications Systems.

The company, based in Florida, has $5 billion of annual revenue and about 16,000 employees. In recent years it has seen several rounds of cost-cutting in its broadcast business, as we’ve reported. Cost-cutting was not cited in the announcement as a reason for the move. Company officials did not immediately reply to a query about the impact on broadcast employees, if any, of the realignment.

The company is emphasizing its ability to integrate technology and services to “capture, aggregate, distribute and analyze any type of communications or information — including voice, video, data and imaging.” The goal of this realignment, it said, is to “provide increased market focus” and address a growing market for integrated communications and info technology and services.

The three segments now will be RF Communications (which is unchanged and deals with things like tactical and land mobile radios, defense networking and public safety); Government Communications Systems, which provides communications and information technology and systems integration for special government applications; and the new Integrated Network Solutions, where broadcast employees now reside.

Dan Pearson was named acting group president for the new segment; he’s Harris executive vice president and chief operating officer. He stated in the announcement that commercial businesses and government customers “are increasingly seeking total solutions — combining innovative technology with managed services.”

Chairman Howard Lance said this realignment also helps Harris expand more into adjacent markets and global regions that are “growing faster and have higher margins than some of our traditional government markets.”

— Paul McLane, Radio World

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