January 16, 2013

Charleston Software Giant Blackbaud Cuts 150 Jobs, Including About 50 Locally

Brendan Kearney  /  Post and Courier

Blackbaud Inc. laid off 150 employees today, including about 50 workers at the software company's Daniel Island headquarters.

A company spokeswoman said the job cuts stem from the still-sluggish economy and Blackbaud's acquisition last year of Convio, a former competitor based in Texas. Convio's legacy business has not performed as expected.

Karoline McLaughlin, the spokeswoman, said the cuts are spread across the company's offices, but only "a handful" of positions were cut at Convio's former headquarters in Austin. She also said they are spread among different departments, including but not exclusively sales, marketing and administration.

Following the cuts, Blackbaud will have about 2,600 employees. About 1,150 work on Daniel Island.

The cuts follow a smaller reshuffling in late August, when the company eliminated 51 positions. McLaughlin said all of those people were offered different jobs within the company but only about half took those offers.

Blackbaud announced its intention to buy Convio in January but because the merger involved heavyweights in the nonprofit technology world, the closing was delayed until May by a U.S. Department of Justice antitrust review.

Blackbaud paid a total of $325 million for Convio, based on a $275 million valuation of the company plus the $50 million Convio had in cash on hand.

Last summer, Blackbaud executives said they were aiming for a 20 percent profit margin, but the company's third-quarter earnings report was underwhelming. McLaughlin said the cuts announced Tuesday were part of a strategy to meet investor expectations and emerge as a stronger company over the course of 2013.