WebMD axes 250 jobs in cost cutting drive

Popular medical information site WebMD is to cut 250 jobs after disappointing Q3 results.

The cuts include 250 positions, representing around 14 percent of WebMD’s total workforce, as well as operating expenditure cuts of $45 million.
Layoffs are expected to mostly take place effective the end of 2012, but will also continue throughout the first quarter of 2012, the company said in a press release explaining the move.
The company said it would take a charge of about $6 million to $8 million in the fourth quarter, primarily for severance and other restructuring-related costs.
The company also said it plans to streamline its operations and focus resources on increasing user engagement, customer satisfaction and innovation, and expects these efforts to reduce annualized operating expenses by about $45 million.
While most of the job cuts will be effective at the end of the year, other cost saving actions will be implemented in the first quarter of 2013, the company said in a statement.
WebMD is a popular and long-trusted website for checking health and disease related information, but the company has lost its sheen in recent times as it struggled to convert its growing user base into a steady revenue stream.
The company’s shares, which have lost nearly 40 percent of their value over the past six months, closed at $13.85 on Monday on the Nasdaq.