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AFT prez/CEO Taritero ankles

Just 11 months after joining American Film Technologies Inc., president and CEO Joseph Taritero has left the company.

The decision reportedly was made last Friday, when Taritero notified Arthur Hartel, who is general counsel for the industry’s leading film-colorizing company.

Yesterday AFT announced that Hartel would assume Taritero’s job, while Robert Glaser would become chairman. Taritero was not available for comment.

“Joe has decided he’s going to pursue other business ventures, and found those more to his liking,” said Hartel, who was visiting AFT’s operations in San Diego. Hartel, who lives in Philadelphia, said he would be spending more time in L.A., and a move to the area appeared likely.

He also acknowledged that a strategic shift may be in the wind. The company, which had put a lot of effort into computerized animation recently, may be looking to sell some of its software tools.

Last December, Taritero was recruited to AFT from Marvel Prods., where he was CEO and president, to engineer a turn-around. In the ensuing months, Taritero wrote down the company’s library, and boosted its computer animation work. As a result, AFT posted a net income of $ 900,000 on $ 14 million in revenues, a 43% increase. By comparison, the company posted a net loss of $ 6.4 million in the previous year.

AFT’s stock closed unchanged at $ 1.50.

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