Six Apart Lays Off 8 Percent Of Staff; Management Takes Pay Cut

imageSoftware firm Six Apart, which many major media and publishing companies use to run their blogs and in some cases power their entire Web sites, is laying off 8 percent of its staff — or about 16 employees — and the entire management team will take a 15 percent pay cut. In a blog post, CEO Chris Alden laid out the reasons for the changes, including the fact that the company had grown wildly in this past year (adding nearly 90 new employees) and a need for a new organizational structure to better serve its users in 2009.

Fewer silos: The company is moving its marketing, community and support staff into a unified “Genius Group” to better focus on promoting bloggers and other clients — and will spend less time (and budget) promoting its own brand. Six Apart is also bringing its various tech teams (including engineering, analytics and operations) under the leadership of co-founder and CTO Ben Trott. Alden said the tech division had been scattered since the company rolled out its ad-services platform, which requires bloggers to migrate to TypePad. Media companies currently using Six Apart include NBC, the Washington Post (NYSE: WPO) and MLB.

More focus on ad sales: Six Apart added advertising and consulting services to its repertoire with the acquisition of Apperceptive, a social-media agency in April; and created Six Apart Media, a division that would focus solely on blog ad sales. Alden said that it would continue to grow the sales and account-management teams as necessary in the coming year.