Online estate auction startup Everything But The House is cutting hundreds of jobs as it rethinks its strategy and slows growth in some markets.
The Cincinnati-based startup cut 212 jobs at its offices there, WCPO Cincinnati reported. That’s 30 percent of the company’s local staff.
EBTH catalogs items in an estate and places those items for online auction starting at $1. The service, founded in 2007, is used by many people in the process of downsizing or distributing a family estate. The site was operating for sellers in over a dozen states and allows buyers located anywhere to bid on estate sale items, provided they pay for shipping.
EBTH declined to confirm the number of the layoffs to Inman or answer questions about which jobs were affected and when the cuts would take effect, but spokesperson Brittany Sykes provided a statement about the decision.
“This week’s news is part of a deliberate strategy by EBTH to double down on the customer experience,” Sykes said. “We are setting ourselves up for greater success in the long term, by focusing our efforts on perfecting the customer experience in fewer markets in the short term. This focus will give us maximum leverage and returns from our planned investments in people, technology, physical locations and our supply chain.”
According to WCPO, 202 of the cuts were at a processing plant and nine jobs were eliminated from the company’s headquarters. The company had agreed to hire 275 new employees in 2015 to fuel an expansion from 19 to more than 30 markets. Sykes told Inman that some affected employees will remain with EBTH for up to 60 days.
“Our number one core value will be an obsession with providing a great experience to buyers and sellers across the entire EBTH marketplace,” Sykes said. “As such, all contracts that have been signed with EBTH in these markets are still being honored.”
The backtracking in EBTH’s expansion strategy comes two weeks after the startup brought on a new CEO. Former Zipcar CEO Scott Griffith took over from Andy Nielsen.
“Scott is currently spending his time getting up to speed with the team, and evaluating the company’s organization and structure,” Nielsen wrote in an internal email about the change in leadership previously obtained by Inman.