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WorldStream Shuts Down

WorldStream Communications (www.worldstream.com) shut down last week, firing almost all of its employees after failing to get new funding. Calls to WorldStream were not returned as of press time and the main number only has a recording.

According to sources, top company executives, including CEO Bill Malloy, quit last Monday. By the end of the week, practically all employees (about 85) were let go except for a few key individuals looking to sell off assets. Board member and general counsel Rich Thumann, is apparently still at the company.

Malloy, who was appointed CEO in October 2000, came from Peapod, a Chicago-based Internet grocer, where he was president and CEO. Prior to Peapod, he spent 11 years with McCaw Cellular Communications and AT&T Wireless Services.

WorldStream, a privately-funded company was founded in 1998 by Ken Williams, famous for starting and growing the game company, Sierra Online. It was funded by Crosspoint Venture Partners, Polaris Venture Partners and Williams, himself.

Williams originally wanted to start a company called TalkSpot, for online talk radio shows. That vision turned into the company known as WorldStream, which later created a mobile "Studio in a box" solution for webcasters. But after that failed to take hold, WorldStream turned to corporate communications, helping companies with announcements, interactive meetings and other events. WorldStream could handle live audio or video, PowerPoint slides, chat and other interactive features.

The company's last official announcement said it was giving away a free 15-day trial of its Desktop AudioPlus service.

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