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PARSIPPANY, NJ-In a conference call yesterday morning, Wyndham Worldwide Corp. said it now expects to reduce gross Vacation Ownership Interest sales in 2009 to approximately $1.2 billion from expected gross VOI sales of around $2 billion in 2008 by eliminating sales offices and marketing programs. The job losses, which will amount to around 4,000, represent about 12.5% of the company’s 32,000 global employees. In addition to eliminating the need to access the ABS market, the realignment will reduce costs and capital needs and enhance cash flow.

“With the credit markets showing no signs of improvement, we are effectively eliminating our need to access the securitization markets to support an otherwise well-performing vacation ownership business,” said Wyndham Worldwide chairman and CEO Stephen P. Holmes in a statement made Monday. “These proactive steps will ensure maximum flexibility across all our businesses irrespective of conditions within the asset-backed securities market. If the markets are available, we will certainly utilize this effective form of financing, but we are assuming that the markets will be unattractive for the foreseeable future.”

The company expects to take a charge of approximately $50 million to $60 million in the fourth quarter of 2008 and $10 million to $15 million in the first quarter of 2009 related to these initiatives. These charges are incremental to previously revealed company-wide restructuring charges of $25 million to $30 million in the fourth quarter of 2008 and $5 million to $10 million in the first quarter of 2009.

During the conference call, Wyndham also reiterated its fourth quarter and 2008 guidance. Based on the changes to its timeshare business and current economic conditions, the company said it now expects total 2009 revenues of $3.7 million to $4.1 million, down from previously revealed expectations of $4.1 million to $4.5 million for the year.

“As we navigate through this difficult economic environment, I am proud of our associates, who continue to deliver outstanding results,” said Holmes. “We have a great mix of strong and stable hospitality businesses. Our vacation ownership business is complementary to this platform, giving us a full spectrum of consumer offerings from an overnight stay to a lifetime of vacations and contributing to strong brand loyalty.” As of deadline, company shares, which had dropped to from a 52-week high of $30.85 to $2.55, were holding steady at $5.60.

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