Tech Briefs

Bloomberg

Layoffs at AT&T’s Israeli development center

American telecommunications company AT&T is laying off dozens of staff at its development center at Airport City, near Ben-Gurion International Airport. The dismissals began last week at the center, which employs several hundred workers and has its origins in AT&T’s 2007 acquisition of the Israeli teleconferencing firm Interwise. Personnel industry sources were surprised by news of the layoffs, because they say the company has been recruiting new employees on a regular basis. AT&T said the layoffs were a necessary move involving adjusting manpower to current company needs, but that efforts would be made to find other positions within the company for those affected. The center is run by Hillel Kobrinsky, who, in the run-up to last year’s Knesset election, ran the headquarters of Yesh Atid, Finance Minister Yair Lapid’s party. (Inbal Orpaz)

Somoto buying mobile app maker Tabatoo

Somoto, a Tel Aviv-based Internet software distribution company, announced Thursday that it would be buying Tabatoo, in a move expanding Somoto’s operations in advertising and mobile applications. Tabatoo, which provides solutions to application developers, is also based in Tel Aviv and will become a Somoto subsidiary. The price tag for the acquisition is about 3.5 million shekels (about $1 million), including 860,000 shekels in cash and stock, with the balance to be paid in the future in part in exchange for the services of the company’s two founders, Ron Dick and Yair Miranda. Somoto shares fell 2.4% Thursday on the news. (Eran Azran)

Gordian Surgical raises $1 million

Gordian Surgical, which has developed an innovative technology for opening and stitching abdominal incisions made in laparoscopic surgery, said last week it had raised $1 million from a group of angel investors, surgeons and an unnamed investment fund. The money will be used to complete product design, win regulatory approval from U.S. and European agencies, and to perform clinical validations, the company said. (TheMarker Staff)