Amazon has joined Meta, Palantir Technologies, Twilio, Zoom, eBay, Okta, Splunk, PayPal, IBM, SAP, Spotify, Alphabet, Intel, Microsoft, Coinbase, Cisco, Salesforce, HP, Roku, Beyond Meat and Twitter in announcing major layoffs in recent months.
Here’s a look at the list of big names across a number of sectors that have been cutting back their workforces.
Last week Amazon.com.inc AMZN,
“This was a difficult decision, but one that we think is best for the company long term,” wrote Jassy, in a memo to staff.
Related: Amazon’s stock dips 1% as another 9,000 layoffs announced
“This was a difficult decision, but one that we think is best for the company long term,” wrote Jassy, in a memo to staff.
“As our internal businesses evaluated what customers most care about, they made re-prioritization decisions that sometimes led to role reductions, sometimes led to moving people from one initiative to another, and sometimes led to new openings where we don’t have the right skills match from our existing team members,” he added. “This initially led us to eliminate 18,000 positions (which we shared in January); and, as we completed the second phase of our planning this month, it led us to these additional 9,000 role reductions.”
In a blog post Dan Clancy, CEO of Amazon’s Twitch subsidiary, said that just over 400 people will be laid off from the live streaming service.
Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc. META,
“With less hiring, I’ve made the difficult decision to further reduce the size of our recruiting team,” Meta Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a blog post on March 14. “We expect to announce restructurings and layoffs in our tech groups in late April, and then our business groups in late May.”
Zuckerberg added: “Overall, we expect to reduce our team size by around 10,000 people and to close around 5,000 additional open roles that we haven’t yet hired.”
Now read: Facebook parent Meta begins mass layoffs of 11,000 workers as Mark Zuckerberg says, ‘I take responsibility’
In November, Meta announced that itwould cut 11,000 employees, or about 13% of its workforce, in the first layoffs in the company’s 18-year history. Zuckerberg took responsibility for the cuts, admitting to expanding the company too quickly amid a pandemic-fueled surge in revenue.
At the time, Zuckerberg wrote that while Meta would be making reductions in every area across both its Family of Apps and Reality Labs segments, some teams would be affected more than others. The cuts to Reality Labs are being closely watched for any potential impact on the company’s metaverse strategy, which is handled within the segment.
Data-analytics company Palantir Technologies Inc. PLTR,
Related: Palantir to cut less than 2% of staff as tech layoffs continue
“We believe our company is at an inflection point and to continue to evolve, we are making the tough choice of reducing teams in several areas,” a Palantir spokesperson told MarketWatch. “While less than 2% of our workforce is impacted by these changes, these are incredibly painful decisions but the right ones for the company’s future.”
According to its most recent 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the software company had 3,838 employees as of Dec. 31.
Communications-software company Twilio Inc. TWLO,
The layoffs come amid a restructuring effort at Twilio. In a letter to employees, Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson said the company was forming two business units, Twilio Communications and Twilio Data and Applications. “When we look at these two business units on their own, it’s clear that we’ve gotten too big, especially in Communications,” Lawson wrote. “And that’s why we’re also letting go of some colleagues today.”
Related: Twilio to lay off 17% of its employees to cut costs, while providing upbeat Q4 guidance
This is the second round of layoffs at the company, following cuts announced in September. “At that time, we sought to streamline the company as it was then structured,” Lawson said. “Today’s news, however, is more driven by the need to organize ourselves differently for success — and the changes needed to enact this new structure.”
Twilio said it expected to record charges of $100 million to $135 million related to the layoffs, mostly in the first quarter of 2023.
In early February, buy-now-pay-later company Affirm Holdings Inc. AFRM,
Related: Affirm stock tanks after earnings whiff, as company plans to lay off 19% of staff
“Over the last three quarters, the Fed increased its benchmark rate at an unprecedented pace,” Affirm CEO Max Levchin said in a message to employees. “This has already dampened consumer spending and increased Affirm’s cost of borrowing dramatically. The root cause of where we are today is that I acted too slowly as these macroeconomic changes unfolded.”
Affirm had 2,552 employees as of June 30, 2022, according to its latest 10-K filing.
Zoom Video Communications Inc. ZM,
In a Feb. 7 blog post, Zoom CEO and founder Eric Yuan pointed to the company’s rapid growth during the pandemic. “Our trajectory was forever changed during the pandemic when the world faced one of its toughest challenges, and I am proud of the way we mobilized as a company to keep people connected,” he wrote. “To make this possible, we needed to staff up rapidly to support the quick rise of users on our platform and their evolving needs.”
Within 24 months, Zoom tripled in size, according to Yuan.
“We worked tirelessly and made Zoom better for our customers and users,” he wrote, but he added that the company also made mistakes. “We didn’t take as much time as we should have to thoroughly analyze our teams or assess if we were growing sustainably, toward the highest priorities.”
Now read: Zoom’s stock jumps on news that company will lay off 15% of staff and cut executive pay
The chief executive said the uncertainty of the global economy, and its effect on customers, have prompted Zoom to take “a hard — yet important — look inward to reset ourselves so we can weather the economic environment.”
Yuan said that he is reducing his salary for the coming year by 98% and forgoing his corporate bonus for fiscal year 2023. Members of the company’s executive leadership team will reduce their salaries by 20% for the coming fiscal year while also forfeiting their bonuses, he added.
Zoom had been one of the pandemic’s tech winners as people worked from home, but the company has struggled of late as workers return to the office.
In early February, eBay Inc. EBAY,
“Over the past few months, we’ve taken a thoughtful look at where we are as a company with considerations of the macroeconomic situation around the world and how to best invest and operate so that we can continue to be successful,” said eBay CEO Jamie Iannone in a Feb. 7 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. “To create long-term, sustainable growth for eBay, we need to evolve our organization as we take the next step in our strategy — focused on driving growth, building a trusted marketplace, empowering enthusiasts and seeding new technologies for the future.”
Related: eBay to lay off 500 employees, about 4% of its workforce
The company said the cuts would allow it to concentrate on areas where it could make the biggest impact, according to Iannone. “Importantly, this shift gives us additional space to invest and create new roles in high-potential areas — new technologies, customer innovations and key markets — and to continue to adapt and flex with the changing macro, e-commerce and technology landscape,” he wrote. “We’re also simplifying our structure to make decisions more effectively and with more speed.”
Dell Technologies Inc. DELL,
The company announced the layoffs in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission in early February, citing “a challenging global economic environment.”
The tech giant had 133,000 employees as of Jan. 28, 2022, according to its last 10-K filing. If the company’s staffing has remained at that level, the layoffs would affect 6,650 employees.
Also read: Dell to cut staff by 5% as ‘conditions continue to erode’
In a message to employees that was also filed with the SEC, Jeff Clarke, Dell’s vice chair and co-chief operating officer, described a series of changes the company is making around global sales and services, which he said will make the company more nimble and provide a “better structure” for the future.
“What we know is market conditions continue to erode with an uncertain future,” he said in the message. “The steps we’ve taken to stay ahead of downturn impacts — which enabled several strong quarters in a row — are no longer enough. We now have to make additional decisions to prepare for the road ahead.”
He added: “Unfortunately, with changes like this, some members of our team will be leaving the company. There is no tougher decision, but one we had to make for our long-term health and success.”
Okta Inc. OKTA,
“We entered fiscal 2023 with a growth plan based on the demand we experienced in the prior year,” the CEO said. “This led us to overhire for the macroeconomic reality we’re in today.”
Now read: Okta CEO says layoffs were ‘the last thing I wanted to do’ as company cuts 300 jobs
McKinnon also highlighted “execution challenges” that Okta has faced. “I wish I had responded sooner, but we’re doing the best we can today to adjust to this reality,” he said.
In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Okta said it will incur approximately $15 million in restructuring charges in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2023 for future cash employee severance and benefits costs, which primarily will be paid in the first quarter of fiscal 2024.
Splunk Inc. SPLK,
In a letter to employees, Splunk CEO Gary Steele said that the cuts will be mostly in North America. “This decision is another step in a broader set of proactive organizational and strategic changes that include optimizing our processes, cost structure and how we operate globally to ensure Splunk continues to balance growth with profitability through these uncertain times and drive success over the long term,” he wrote.
Also read: Splunk to lay off 4% of its staff in latest sign of software cutbacks
In an SEC filing, Splunk estimated that it would incur approximately $28 million in charges and future cash expenditures related to its reorganization plan. Splunk expected the plan to be completed, and to book “substantially all” the associated charges and cash expenditures, in the first quarter of fiscal year 2024.
PayPal Holdings Inc. PYPL,
“While we have made substantial progress in right-sizing our cost structure, and focused our resources on our core strategic priorities, we have more work to do,” Schulman said in the email. “We must continue to change as our world, our customers, and our competitive landscape evolve.”
Also see: PayPal to lay off 7% of employees as part of cost-cutting push
PayPal said it will continue to hire “strategically” this year, spokeswoman Amanda Miller told MarketWatch.
In August, PayPal announced a cost-cutting initiative, saying it was targeting at least $1.3 billion in cost savings during 2023.
International Business Machines Corp. IBM,
Related: IBM posts biggest annual sales increase in more than a decade, announces layoffs
The layoffs were not mentioned on the conference call to discuss IBM’s fourth-quarter results. A spokesman said the cuts were mostly related to a spinoff and the sale of IBM’s Watson Health unit, resulting in a $300 million charge in the first quarter.
Also read: SAP to cut nearly 3,000 Jobs, weighs Qualtrics stake sale
The restructuring program would affect some 2,800 employees. At the end of 2022, the Walldorf, Germany-based company had 111,961 employees globally.
Silicon Foundry-equipment supplier Lam Research Corp. LRCX,
Now read: Lam Research to trim 7% of workforce, increase R&D spending as memory-chip crunch hits outlook
The cuts came as Lam Research reported its results for the quarter ending Dec. 22, 2022. “Given the decline in wafer fabrication equipment spending expected in calendar year 2023, we are taking proactive steps to lower our cost structure and drive efficiencies across our global footprint, while preserving critical R&D,” said CEO Tim Archer in a statement. “With these actions, Lam is focused on accelerating our strategic priorities to capitalize on the semiconductor industry’s long-term growth prospects.”
In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Spotify Technology SPOT,
Bloomberg News originally reported that the streaming music service was planning job cuts. At the end of the third quarter, Spotify had 9,808 full-time employees globally.
The Stockholm-based company estimated that it would incur approximately €35 million to €45 million ($38.1 million to $48.9 million) in severance-related charges.
Now read: Spotify to lay off nearly 600 employees
The job cuts came after Spotify slowed its pace of hiring in 2022. Last June, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek told employees that the company would reduce its hiring by 25%, according to Bloomberg and CNBC reports. Spotify laid off at least 38 employees at its Gimlet and Parcast podcast units in October.
In recent years, Spotify has spent massive amounts on podcasts, which has weighed on the company’s margins. The podcast spending has yet to deliver profits, although last year Ek predicted a meaningful increase in profitability in the next couple of years.
In its SEC filing, Spotify said that, as part of a broader reorganization, the company’s chief content and advertising business officer, Dawn Ostroff, would depart.
Google parent Alphabet Inc. GOOGL,
“The fact that these changes will impact the lives of Googlers weighs heavily on me, and I take full responsibility for the decisions that led us here,” he added.
Like a number of other tech giants that have made layoffs recently, such as Microsoft Corp. MSFT,
Now read: Google parent Alphabet planning to cut 12,000 jobs globally
At the end of September 2022, Alphabet had almost 187,000 employees, up from almost 164,000 employees at the end of March.
“As an almost 25-year-old company, we’re bound to go through difficult economic cycles,” Pichai said. “These are important moments to sharpen our focus, re-engineer our cost base, and direct our talent and capital to our highest priorities.”
Echoing recent comments from Microsoft, Pichai also highlighted the importance of artificial intelligence. “Being constrained in some areas allows us to bet big on others,” he said. “Pivoting the company to be AI-first years ago led to groundbreaking advances across our businesses and the whole industry.”
Read: Google looks to shed 10,000 ‘poor-performing’ workers: report
The CEO said that the company was getting ready to share “some entirely new experiences” for users, developers and businesses. “We have a substantial opportunity in front of us with AI across our products and are prepared to approach it boldly and responsibly,” he added.
A 2022 report in The Information said that Google was considering cutting 10,000 jobs. The company was also looking into employing a ranking system that would eliminate the lowest-ranked “poor-performing” employees, the report said.
“Earlier this year, we launched Googler Reviews and Development (GRAD) to help employee development, coaching, learning and career progression throughout the year,” a Google spokesperson told MarketWatch in a statement at the time. “The new system helps establish clear expectations and provide employees with regular feedback.”
Intel Corp. INTC,
According to filings with California’s Employment Development Department, the chipmaker planned to cut 201 jobs at its offices in Santa Clara, Calif., which is home to Intel’s headquarters, effective Jan. 31. In late December, Intel reported 90 job cuts, during which the company confirmed that it also has put some manufacturing employees on unpaid leave.
The tech giant also added to the 111 job cuts previously announced in Folsom, Calif., at a campus dedicated to research and development. There were 176 layoffs effective Jan. 31, and an additional 167 job cuts effective March 15.
Now read: Intel cuts hundreds more jobs in California, and indicates more to come
Intel also expected more layoffs will be detailed in future filings.
In October, Intel announced plans for job cuts as it reported its third-quarter results. The chip maker said it was focused on driving $3 billion in cost reductions in 2023. “Inclusive in our efforts will be steps to optimize our headcount,” Chief Executive Pat Gelsinger said during a conference call with analysts to discuss the third-quarter results.
The chipmaker had 121,000-plus employees worldwide at the end of 2021.
Microsoft Corp. MSFT,
“Today, we are making changes that will result in the reduction of our overall workforce by 10,000 jobs through the end of [the third quarter of fiscal year 2023],” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wrote in a blog post on Jan. 18. “This represents less than 5 percent of our total employee base, with some notifications happening today.”
Now read: Microsoft confirms plans to lay off about 10,000 workers as tech companies cut back
Microsoft, he said, was aligning its cost structure with its revenue and with where the company sees customer demand. Nadella wrote that while customers had accelerated their digital spending during the pandemic, they are now looking to “optimize” their digital spending to do more with less. “We’re also seeing organizations in every industry and geography exercise caution as some parts of the world are in a recession and other parts are anticipating one,” he added.
The tech giant was taking a $1.2 billion charge in the second quarter related to severance costs, changes to its hardware portfolio and costs of lease consolidation as it created higher density across its workspaces.
Also see: More than 25,000 global tech workers laid off in the first weeks of 2023, says layoff tracking site
The layoffs did not come completely out of the blue. Earlier reports from Sky News and Bloomberg indicated that Microsoft was preparing to make cuts.
In the blog post, Nadella said that while Microsoft was eliminating roles in some areas, the company would continue to hire in key strategic areas. The CEO did not specify which areas will see hiring but did describe advances in artificial intelligence as “the next major wave of computing.”
Coinbase Global Inc. COIN,
“In 2022, the crypto market trended downwards along with the broader macroeconomy,” said Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, in a message to employees on Jan. 10. “We also saw the fallout from unscrupulous actors in the industry, and there could still be further contagion.”
Also read: Coinbase to cut 950 jobs and book charges of up to $163 million
The crypto exchange said it would book charges of about $149 million to $163 million for the cuts, divided between about $58 million to $68 million in cash charge relating to severance and $91 million to $95 million in stock-based compensation charges relating to the vesting of outstanding equity awards.
The job cuts followed the company’s announcement in June that it would lay off 18% of its employees.
Cisco Systems Inc. CSCO,
The layoffs spanned a number of departments at the networking giant and extend across various positions, including software and hardware engineering, program management, product design and marketing. According to the state filings, the number of employees at the company’s San Jose, Calif., headquarters who were affected totaled 371, while 222 jobs were being cut in nearby Milpitas, and another 80 were being cut in Cisco’s San Francisco office. The notices said employees were notified in early December and were given a choice of an effective termination date of either Feb. 1 or March 13.
In November, Cisco announced it was planning a “limited business restructuring” that would adjust the networking giant’s real-estate portfolio and affect about 5% of its 80,000-strong global workforce, or some 4,000 people.
Also read: Cisco layoffs begin with hundreds of job cuts in California and more expected
“This is about rebalancing across the board,” said Cisco Chief Financial Officer Scott Herren at the time, adding that as many jobs will be added as reduced.
“Our goal is to minimize the number of people who end up having to leave,” Herren told MarketWatch. “We will match as many with new roles at the company as we can. This is not about reducing our workforce. In fact, we’ll have roughly the same number of employees at the end of this fiscal year as we had when we started.”
Salesforce Inc. CRM,
The San Francisco-based company announced the layoffs in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Jan. 4. In addition to the job cuts, Salesforce said it planned to exit some real estate and reduce office space.
The restructuring plan is intended to reduce operating costs, improve operating margins and continue advancing Salesforce’s commitment to “profitable growth,” the company said in the filing.
Salesforce estimated that it would incur approximately $1.4 billion to $2.1 billion in charges in connection with the restructuring plan, of which approximately $800 million to $1 billion was expected to be incurred in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2023.
Also read: Salesforce will lay off 10% of staff as part of restructuring
Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff said that the company grew too quickly for the current environment. “I’ve been thinking a lot about how we came to this moment,” he wrote in a letter to employees that was also filed with the SEC. “As our revenue accelerated through the pandemic, we hired too many people leading into this economic downturn we’re now facing, and I take responsibility for that.”
In 2022, Salesforce laid off hundreds of employees from its sales team, according to news reports, as the tech sector as a whole wrestled with a challenging economic environment. “Our sales performance process drives accountability,” said a Salesforce spokesperson in a statement emailed to MarketWatch in November. “Unfortunately, that can lead to some leaving the business, and we support them through their transition.”
As of February 2022, the company, which provides customer-relationship-management software, had over 78,000 employees globally.
In November, HP Inc. HPQ,
“Companies are delaying their refresh [sales] cycle,” Lores told MarketWatch in an interview ahead of the public release of the company’s fourth-quarter results.
Now read: HP plans to cut up to 10% of workforce as earnings forecast comes up short
HP is launching a three-year workforce-reduction plan meant to shed 4,000 to 6,000 jobs, according to Lores, with more than half of the roughly $1 billion in restructuring costs expected to be realized in the new fiscal year.
Roku Inc. ROKU,
“Due to the current economic conditions in our industry, we have made the difficult decision to reduce Roku’s headcount expenses by a projected 5%, to slow down our [operating-expense] growth rate,” the company said in a brief statement, noting that about 200 positions in the U.S. would be affected. “Taking these actions now will allow us to focus our investments on key strategic priorities to drive future growth and enhance our leadership position,” the statement said.
Related: Roku to cut 5% of staff in latest signal of challenging times for ad industry
In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Roku said it anticipated charges of about $28 million to $31 million related to the job cuts, mainly stemming from severance payments, notice pay, employee benefits and other costs. The company expected to take the bulk of those charges in the fourth quarter of 2022. Implementation of the workforce reductions will be mostly complete by the end of the first quarter of 2023, it said.
Video software company Kaltura Inc. KLTR,
In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Kaltura said its reorganization plan aimed to increase efficiency and productivity in response to the current macroeconomic climate. “The plan’s main objectives are to position the company for lower demand, spend, and available budgets across the company’s market segments, align the company’s business strategy in light of these market conditions and support the company’s growth initiatives and return path to profitability,” it said.
Now read: Video software company Kaltura to cut 11% of work force in restructuring
On an annualized basis, the total cost reduction from Kaltura’s downsizing was expected to be approximately $16 million.
The New York-based company said it would initially book pretax charges of approximately $1 million, primarily for severance and related costs, all of which were expected to be expensed in the first quarter of 2023. The reorganization plan was expected to be “substantially completed” in the first half of 2023, according to the SEC filing.
RingCentral Inc. RNG,
In October, RingCentral was added to the list of “zombie” stocks compiled by equity research firm New Constructs.
Also read: RingCentral added to ‘zombie’ stocks list by equity research firm New Constructs
New Constructs, which uses machine learning and natural language processing to parse corporate filings and model economic earnings, described RingCentral as a “cash incinerator” at risk of declining to $0 per share.
Also in November, Redfin RDFN,
“The housing market will get smaller in 2023,” Kelman wrote in an email to staff. “A layoff is awful but we can’t avoid it,” he added.
Now read: ‘A layoff is awful but we can’t avoid it:’ Redfin lays off 13% of staff as housing market slows down
In June, Redfin laid off 8% of its staff, citing “years” of “fewer home sales.”
Beyond Meat Inc. BYND,
The cuts followed a 4% workforce reduction in August.
Related: Beyond Meat’s stock edges lower on sales drop, growing losses
The pressures on the plant-based food company continue. In November, Beyond Meat reported a big drop in third-quarter revenue, escalating losses and tepid revenue guidance.
Meta’s job cuts came hot on the heels of layoffs at Twitter that affected about half of that company’s 7,500 employees. In late October, Elon Musk bought Twitter for the inflated price of $44 billion and quickly launched an effort to slash costs at the unprofitable company.
Before the layoffs hit, Twitter faced a class-action lawsuit over a lack of notice to employees.
Also read: ‘I just killed it’: Musk scraps Twitter’s gray ‘official’ label just hours after its launch
The cuts, which came just before the midterm elections, also sparked concern about the microblogging site’s ability to fight misinformation in the postelection period.
On Dec. 6, San Francisco City Attorney David Chiu told MarketWatch that he will look into the loss of janitors’ jobs at Twitter.
In November, Lyft Inc. LYFT,
Now read: Lyft lays off 13% of workers in second round of cuts this year, maintains financial guidance
The latest layoffs followed 60 job cuts in July; a hiring freeze through the end of the year was also implemented in September. In April 2020, in the early days of the pandemic, Lyft laid off nearly 1,000 employees and put another 288 on furlough.
Some companies confirmed their layoffs earlier in 2022. In August, Snap Inc. SNAP,
“The scale of these changes vary from team to team, depending upon the level of prioritization and investment needed to execute against our strategic priorities,” said Snap Chief Executive Evan Spiegel in a statement. “The extent of this reduction should substantially reduce the risk of ever having to do this again, while balancing our desire to invest in our long-term future and reaccelerate our revenue growth.”
Related: Snap stock rallies more than 10% after company confirms layoffs, launches restructuring
The Verge reported that Snap had more than 6,400 employees prior to the job cuts.
Also in August, Robinhood Markets Inc. HOOD,
Also read: Robinhood to lay off 23% of its workforce, with CEO admitting ‘this is on me’
In April, Robinhood cut about 9% of its workforce. At that time, CEO Vlad Tenev wrote in a blog post that the company had grown from about 700 employees at the start of 2020 to nearly 3,800.
In July, Coinbase Global Inc. COIN,
Now read: Why Coinbase is laying off 18% of employees and what it means for crypto
The crypto exchange had expanded rapidly, from 1,250 employees at the beginning of 2021 to 4,948 at the end of March 2022. “I am the CEO, and the buck stops with me,” said Armstrong, adding that the company grew too rapidly.
Also in July, Shopify Inc. SHOP,
Adobe Inc. ADBE,
“As part of our ongoing and routine business prioritization, we have shifted some employees to positions that support critical initiatives and removed a small number of specific roles to balance resources against top priorities,” said Adobe, in a statement emailed to MarketWatch.
Adobe was not doing companywide layoffs and was still hiring for critical roles across the company, it said. “The investments we’re making today to drive innovation, expand our product portfolio and serve a growing number of customers will enable us to continue to drive strong growth,” Adobe added.
The company has more than 28,000 employees worldwide.
Videogame retailer and meme-stock darling GameStop Corp. GME,
Speaking during a conference call to discuss the company’s third-quarter results, GameStop CEO Matt Furlong described reductions in headcount during the back half of 2022, but did not give specific numbers. “We now have a firm understanding of the resources required to pursue opportunities in gaming,” he said.
Additional reporting by Tomi Kilgore, Mike Murphy, Anviksha Patel, Ciara Linnane, Levi Sumagaysay, Bill Peters, Jon Swartz and Emily Bary.