RealTime IT News

AOL Lays Off 850 Following Netscape Acquisition

America Online, Inc. this week confirmed it has started laying off 850 of its approximately 12,000 workers now that its acquisition of Netscape Communications Corp. has been finalized.

The layoffs are the product of redundant job functions resulting from the combination of the two companies. Most staff reductions occurred in administrative departments, interactive services and technical support for the Netcenter portal.

Jim Whitney, said AOL has moved as quickly as possible to communicate with all employees impacted by the layoffs.

"Anytime two companies are combined there is going to be overlapping job functions that will need to be addressed."

Outplaced employees were equally divided between the two companies. A total of 425 employees at AOL and Netscape each received notice during individual meetings with their respective management teams.

Employees that were laid off will receive 90-days' pay and health coverage options. AOL has also retained career transition firm Drake Beam Morin to assist outplaced employees in finding new positions.

AOL intends to retain more than 2,000 Netscape employees that have already been sent letters of intent detailing job descriptions, salaries, and titles.