Local tech business might leave town

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ModusLink Global Solutions is considering moving Tech for Less jobs to Bloomington, Ind.

ModusLink bought Tech for Less in 2009 and said this week it may consider moving jobs.

A former employee said this week that the company plans to move some operations to Bloomington, shut down one of the facilities, and possibly move customer service jobs to Utah – possibly leaving the Springs completely.

ModusLink did not confirm plans for moves or layoffs, but said it “may consider” them in response to questions about rumors circulated by former employees this week that the company plans to move some operations to Bloomington, Ind., shut down one of the facilities and perhaps move customer service jobs to Utah and leave Colorado Springs altogether.

“We may consider relocating some employees in the future,” ModusLink spokeswoman Farrah Phillipo said in an e-mail, “but at this time, no decisions have been made to relocate employees to Bloomington.”

ModusLink has a Solution Center in Bloomington, which it acquired in 2008 when it purchased PTS Electronics, where it performs returns management, consumer electronics repair, refurbishing and value recovery services, Phillipo said.

“We perform similar returns and repair processes in Bloomington as we perform in Colorado Springs,” Phillipo said, “and Bloomington is strategically located for returned product we receive from clients that is coming from the east coast.”

When ModusLink bought Tech for Less in December 2009, the company had roughly 200 employees, according to a CSBJ report from that time. Brad Taylor, Rick Parker and Robert Irwin founded the local company in 2001. When they sold to ModusLink, Tech for Less was generating more than $40 million in revenue a year and had almost no debt. ModusLink bought it with cash.

The business still operates out of two facilities on Garden of the Gods Road totaling 130,000 square feet. But then-CEO Jason Lockwood said that if the company continued to grow as it had been, it would likely need to expand.

Phillipo said that ModusLink eliminated 43 positions at Tech for Less in February and it had 116 employees at the two Colorado Springs facilities as of Oct. 31.

Phillipo would not say if ModusLink is planning any further layoffs.

“As a matter of company policy, we don’t disclose information impacting any employees until final decisions are made and our employees have been informed,” she  said.