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Tech Industry

Employee resource portal slashes 16 percent of staff

Abilizer Solutions, formerly known as Perksatwork.com, lays off about 26 people to help eliminate redundancies in the company and refocus.

Technology company Abilizer Solutions let go 16 percent of its staff last week, a sign that Internet-related cutbacks affect more than just content and e-commerce companies.

James Greene, chief executive of Abilizer, which operates corporate employee Web sites, said the layoffs will help eliminate redundancies within the company and will "realign (the company's) focus more to the infrastructure, technology and service components of the business."

About 26 people were let go, not including contractors, Greene said. The company now employs about 150 people.

The layoffs at Abilizer, which changed its name from Perksatwork.com in June, follow similar measures taken throughout the Internet industry to trim costs and emphasize a track to profitability. Most of the cutbacks, however, have surrounded online content and e-commerce companies, the ones hardest hit by the market downturn.

Online drugstore More.com, gardening site Garden.com, party-planning site GreatEntertaining.com and music entertainment site iCast are among those that have cut their work forces in the past month.

Abilizer, based in San Francisco, operates a portal that helps companies relay information to their employees about topics such as stock options and health benefits. Customers of Abilizer's technology include EDS, Oracle, PeopleSoft, Robertson Stephens and Sun Microsystems.

Greene, the former managing partner of Andersen Consulting's Internet business, said the company is in a sound financial position, having raised $80 million since its inception in fall 1998. Investors in the company include Technology Crossover Ventures, Thomas Weisel Partners, E*Trade, European Webgroup, Blackstone Capital Partners III and Cendant.