Child-focused social game Habbo Hotel wants to refocus on its core strengths.
60 jobs will be lost in the next six weeks, as a result of a restructuring of kid-friendly Habbo Hotel. The developer, Sulake, only had 130 employees to begin with, so this represents a 45% cull.
"Habbo is going back to its roots," claimed Sulake CEO Paul LaFontaine, as he described the restructuring plan. LaFontaine wants Habbo Hotel to refocus on what he describes as the game's core strengths: "the friendship features inside Habbo, and the moderation features for keeping it safe."
The job losses are part of a scheme that will see content development pass from in-house teams to third party developers. LaFontaine hopes that the lure of being able to reach 12 different countries will bring third parties to Sulake, despite the Habbo brand being tainted by safety issues.
Habbo's safety - or the lack of it - became the focus of a news exposé in June. The social game was labelled a "pedophile haven," and shortly afterwards advertisers began fleeing the company in droves. Its two largest investors, private equity group 3i and Balderton Capital, both dumped their stock holdings.
LaFontaine claims that the worst is over, and that earnings have risen to approximately 75% of the monthly revenue Habbo used to generate before disaster struck.