VerticalNet

(VERT)

is giving pink slips to about 150 employees, or 8.3% of the company's regular full-time work force, and will record a charge of $2 million to $3 million, or 2 cents to 3 cents a share, in the fiscal first quarter.

The company, which is based in Horsham, Pa., said the job reductions will eliminate some of the unnecessary positions created through acquisitions, while cutting costs as the e-business software developer tries to turn a profit. The company will also close some of its sales offices.

VerticalNet ended the

Nasdaq

regular session at $6, but slipped to $5.88 in after-hours

Island

activity.

VerticalNet expects the actions to generate savings of about $11 million a year. The company had about $145 million in cash and other liquid assets as of Dec. 31.

Analysts expect the company to lose 9 cents a share in the first quarter of fiscal 2001, according to

First Call/Thomson Financial

.