H. Andrew Cross, who was named president of Franklin Electronic Publishers earlier this year, has announced a number of initiatives aimed at building consumer awareness for Franklin's products, realigning its international operations and improving its marketing and distribution functions.

To reach its objectives, Franklin has named Mary Repke senior v-p of marketing. Repke had been with Sharp Electronics. The company is also restructuring its international operations into two distinct regions, Europe and Asia, and is in the process of putting dedicated management teams in place to head the different units. Franklin's manufacturing and warehouse/logistics functions have been consolidated under Barry Lipsky, a move that puts the electronic publisher's supply chain under one executive. On the marketing side, the educational, medical and M divisions have been joined together under Toni Tracy.

For the first quarter ended June 30, Franklin reported a 27% increase in sales to $21 million, although higher advertising and marketing costs resulted in a loss of $684,000 in the quarter compared to $420,000 in the first quarter of fiscal 1998. Cross said increased investments in marketing and advertising could dampen the company's bottom line in fiscal '99, but he expects the year to be a profitable one.