Creative Planet Inc., a business-to-business solutions firm for the film and TV production industries and parent company of Animation World Network, laid off 72 employees, or 20% of the work staff, on Wednesday, December 13, 2000. The move comes on the heels of the company securing US$30 million in financing from United News & Media PLC. "These reductions are unfortunate," said Creative Planet chairman and CEO Alan DeBevoise. "But we have acquired a number of companies, and as you're scaling and integrating and market conditions change, we have had to streamline the organization. We intend to lead and prosper in this new era based upon a sharp focus on our key products, great customer service and the swift realization of profitability. The best is yet to come for this company." The departing employees received a six-week severance package, including paid vacation reimbursement and full benefits until the end of January.