R.W. Baird Cuts VerticalNet to Market Perform

Joseph Galli's departure adds uncertainty, especially in the areas of longer term vision and ability to consummate software sales and acquisition in the near term

R.W. Baird cut its investment rating on VerticalNet (VERT ) to market perform from market outperform because of Joseph Galli's departure, which adds greater uncertainty, particularly relating to longer term vision and ability to consummate important software sales and acquisition in the near term.

VerticalNet stock fell to 3-7/8, down 1-3/8.

Analyst Patrick Snell said Galli was leading the redirection of the company and that was expected to be a key driver in the company's markets business. Snell said he is reviewing his estimates on the company. He cut his price target on the stock to $7, from $15.

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