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CareerBuilder disintegrates and Kariera SA grows

CareerBuilder disintegratesIn an announcement that is both expected and a surprise, CareerBuilder disintegrates into many smaller pieces – and it’s still not the end yet!

So why was this announcement expected? Three words: Apollo Global Management. The private equity firm controls CareerBuilder, and its modus operandi is chopping and slicing companies into tiny bits, then selling them. From the moment Apollo took control of CareerBuilder, everyone expected this to happen.

But why was this a surprise? Well, like Lazarus, CareerBuilder has returned from the dead many times. As a pioneer in the job board world, it was first purchased as a joint venture between newspaper firms Knight Ridder and the Tribune Company. Another newspaper company, Gannett, joined in a few years later. Then in 2008 CareerBuilder laid off lots of staff – only to bounce back a few years later by acquiring EMSI and Broadbean, among others. In 2016, however, another slump hit them when they lost business from Tronc-controlled newspapers. No worries! CareerBuilder decided that was ok, as they were a ‘cradle to grave’ recruiting solution! Their profits – and price – kept slumping, though, and that’s when Apollo swooped in. Many of us thought Apollo would put CareerBuilder out of its misery quickly – but we were wrong.

So is this truly the end for CareerBuilder? Well…not exactly. Much like its past rival, Monster, CareerBuilder continues to live on. Its international division has been sold to Kariera SA, which will be getting sites in the U.K., France, Germany, Sweden, Vietnam, and India. The newly created Kariera Group will have more than 300 employees, offices in multiple cities and a consolidated turnover approaching 30 million euros this year. In an interesting twist to the story, CareerBuilder had bought, Kariera’s core site, back in 2007 – and then sold it back to the founders in 2020.

What about CareerBuilder in North America? Will it continue lumbering along? Or can it be cut up into ever-smaller pieces? Well…on LinkedIn, Andrew Bolander reported that the job board had laid off 60% of its workforce. And it has a new CEO, too! It’s like a soap opera – except, of course, these events have real, not-pleasant effects on its employees. Despite all this, the site still ranks in the top 5 U.S. sites for recruitment in terms of visits – and it’s generating $275 million a year. That shows you the value of a legacy brand, my friends!

My prediction is that as CareerBuilder disintegrates, its constituent parts will end up with interesting new owners – and CareerBuilder will forever be known as the job board that couldn’t die.

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