Google confirmed Tuesday that the jobs of "a handful" of people working with its Madison office have ended.

The workers were involved in a limited-term outreach program to small businesses in the area, said Google spokesman Jordan Newman, in New York. "These local outreach campaigns are an experiment to see what business owners and users find useful and how they prefer to engage with Google's suite of product offerings," he said.

Google opened a Madison branch in 2008 and Newman said there are no plans to close the offices at 301 S. Blount St. The Internet company has nearly 20 full-time employees in Madison and plans to "keep growing," he said. Google's website, www.google.com/jobs, advertises at least two openings in Madison.

"There is a strong pipeline of talent coming from the UW community and our presence has grown precisely because of the great quality of people that we've found in the Madison area," he said.

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