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Amplified slashes staff by 50 percent

Amplified Holdings, a digital content distribution company, lays off 40 of its 80 staff members as a result of its acquisition of OneBigCD.com and Checkout.com.

    Amplified Holdings, a digital content distribution company, said it has laid off half its staff, joining the list of dot-coms that have made significant cutbacks.

    Amplified said Wednesday its head count has been reduced from 80 to 40 staff members as a result of its acquisition of OneBigCD.com and Checkout.com. The layoffs were across the board in Amplified's various offices.

    "We are in the process of restructuring our business to provide better operational efficiency and effectiveness and a more focused portfolio of technology service offerings," said Amplified's Spokeswoman Ann Garrett. "We are evolving our business model to deliver infrastructure technology and services to online content and retail sites. This restructuring has unfortunately led to layoffs in the company."

    The announcement comes as companies in different sectors of the economy have been swept by the dot-com downdraft. Web animation start-up Icebox said Wednesday that it will close its doors by the end of the week unless it lines up new financing. Meanwhile, digital rights management provider Preview Systems cut 25 percent of its staff on Tuesday.

    Privately held Amplified, based in Atlanta, sells services such as digital rights management, Web hosting, streaming and digital downloads to record labels, entertainment companies and online retailers. Customers of its technology include EMI Recorded Music.

    In January, Amplified struck a deal with Checkout to combine CheckOut's technology with its own to offer online retailers services such as digital content management, delivery and sales. Two months earlier, Amplified acquired syndicated Internet jukebox provider, OneBigCD.com.