Layoffs Roundup: Sun Media; Midway Games; Gaia Online; American Media

Sun Media: Sun Media laid off 600 of its full-time employees, or 10 percent of its total workforce (excluding mailroom operators, reports. The layoffs, set to take place before the new year, are expected to result in restructuring costs of about $14 million. The majority of these cuts will affect the company’s smaller papers, including the Ottawa Sun, London Free Press, 24 Hours and Peterborough Examiner.

Midway Games: More bad news for Midway Games as it has announced cutbacks, including a 25 percent staff reduction, Mediaweek reports. In addition to laying off about 180 of its staff in its Austin, Chicago and San Diego, it is also closing an Austin studio and suspending development work on unnamed, noncore games that had been scheduled for 2010 and 2011. The video game company already faces possible bankruptcy and could end up defaulting on $240 million in debt. Before that, Sumner Redstone sold off National Amusement’s 87 percent stake in Midway Games for $100,000 in cash to relieve his own debt woes.

Gaia Online: Even heavily funded companies aren’t safe … In spite of “anticipating a healthy upcoming year,” social net Gaia Online laid off 13 percent of its workforce, according to the company blog. TechCrunch estimates this to be 36 employees, 16 full time workers and 20 contractors. The company raised a total of $32 million in funding this year and since they say they’ve saved most of it, the cuts aren’t as severe as other online companies.

American Media: The now-struggling magazine company laid off about 16 percent of its previous 800-person workforce, reports Mediaweek. Total ad pages across magazines declined 5.5 percent through September of this year, while celebrity titles’ sales declined 5.9 percent for the first half of the year. Star publisher David Jackson said that while they’ve “held off a long time without any layoffs,” they “still have a lot of growth opportunity.”