Thirty-One Gifts layoffs 182 workers in Ohio

Central Ohio-based direct-sales company Thirty-One Gifts has laid off 182 workers at two of its four area operations.

Company officials said that they were forced to lay off 92 employees at its Johnstown office and 90 employees at its Easton office because of lagging sales growth.

Thirty-One and its independent sales representatives sell purses, totes and other accessories via home parties.

Although sales “continue to beat last year’s numbers, it’s simply not at the pace that was expected for 2012,” the company said in a statement. The reduced number of employees will make Thirty-One better able to deal with the slower sales growth.

In addition, "Throughout 2011, we invested heavily in systems, improved infrastructure in our call center operations, warehouse, and order management systems and in the hiring of employees,” said Cindy Monroe, founder and CEO of the company.

“All of this led to great efficiencies,” she said, which meant that some employees wouldn’t be needed. “This was an extremely difficult decision as we value all our employees’ contributions to our success.”

In addition to the Johnstown and Easton facilities, Thirty-One has operations in Springfield and on Fisher Road.

Source: Dispatch