MPEG-4 software provider iVAST has let go 10 staffers in an attempt to better align its staff with market demand.

"We didn't have a layoff," said Karen Willem, iVAST's senior vice president of finance and chief financial officer. "We did let go about 10 people, but plan to hire about 10 more in different areas," she said. The cuts were spread throughout the organization.

While gearing up to launch its end-to-end MPEG-4 product, the company was engineering based, but now that the product is commercially available, iVAST is reassessing its ranks to focus on its sales and marketing efforts, according to Willem. The company employs roughly 70 people.

The company is focusing much of its efforts in the Asia-Pacific region. "That geography is ready for our product now," said Willem.

In August, iVAST formed a partnership with Oracle Japan and Sun Microsystems to deliver MPEG-4-based interactive multimedia services to Japan's cable, satellite, broadband, enterprise and digital broadcast networks.

The partnership calls for iVAST to provide its MPEG-4 software, Oracle Japan to leverage its database architecture and network content distribution experience and Sun to provide the server hardware and technical support.

A few months earlier, iVAST reached an MPEG-4 deal with Philips Consumer Electronics Co. to integrate the iVAST Experience platform onto Philips' Nexperia silicon system architecture for set-tops, DVDs and other devices.

It's the first complete implementation of MPEG-4 audio and video decoding and systems-layer technologies in programmable silicon, iVAST said.