CMPnet, to be launched June 30, will serve as the front door to some 17 existing CMP sites.
At the same time, CMP is scaling back its ambitious plans for the NetGuide Live site, laying off 24 staffers at what it had hoped would become a TV Guide of the Web. It also is making changes at print magazine NetGuide.
Beth Haggerty will serve as publishing director of CMPnet; she had held that title at NetGuide and NetGuide Live.
CMP will set up a sales force to sell its network of sites, allowing advertisers to place a single order on CMPnet. It's betting that will resonate with major tech advertisers, who increasingly negotiate single contracts with media companies rather than looking at media properties separately.
GOING AFTER ZIFF-DAVIS
President-CEO Michael Leeds said one goal with CMPnet is to displace Ziff-Davis Publishing Co.'s ZDNet as the No. 1 Web site among the computer publishing giants. CMP's top-rated site, TechWeb, last year had ad revenues of $5.3 million, half that of ZDNet's $10.2 million, according to Jupiter Communications.
Scott Wolf, VP-group publisher of CMP's Personal Computer Group, will take on the added post of NetGuide publisher.
In addition to the two-dozen layoffs, NetGuide Live will move its base from San Francisco to CMP's headquarters in Manhasset, N.Y.