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In a move toward greater consolidation and operational efficiency following its purchase of LPI Media Inc., owner of The Advocate and Out magazines, last November, and RSVP Vacations in January, PlanetOut Inc. announced Thursday the completion of a company-wide acquisition integration plan. The publicly traded company (Nasdaq: LGBT) also announced the appointment of Jeff Soukup as president, in addition to his current role as chief operating officer.
"This plan is about leveraging our synergies and fueling for additional growth," said Karen Magee, chief executive officer for PlanetOut Inc. "We are now even better positioned to execute our strategic plan, broaden our market penetration, and extend our reach within the LGBT community. We are also delivering on our commitment to integrate LPI and RSVP and streamline the business where appropriate. Specifically, we are consolidating media and advertising services, e-commerce services, and back-office operations on a global basis."
The head count reduction related to the integration of services and business units, along with other organizational changes, will reduce PlanetOut's total workforce by approximately 5%. Restructuring costs and one-time charges associated with these moves are expected to total approximately $1.3 to $1.5 million, which will be taken primarily during the second quarter of 2006.
In connection with these integration steps, PlanetOut also announced that Mark Elderkin, president and founder of Gay.com, and Donna Gibbs, senior vice president, consumer marketing and commerce, will be leaving the company. "Mark and Donna have both played key roles in helping the company grow and achieve critical milestones, including our IPO," Magee said. "We are indebted to them for their many important contributions to PlanetOut as it defined its path and claimed its leadership position." (The Advocate)