Facebook Owner Meta Slashes Business Teams in Final Round of Layoffs
11:19 JST, May 25, 2023
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Meta Platforms Inc META.O, owner of Facebook, slashed jobs across its business and operations units on Wednesday as it carried out its last batch of a three-part round of layoffs, part of a plan announced in March to eliminate 10,000 roles.
Dozens of employees working in teams such as marketing, site security, enterprise engineering, program management, content strategy and corporate communications took to LinkedIn to announce that they were laid off.
The social media giant also cut employees from its units focused on privacy and integrity, according to the LinkedIn posts.
Meta earlier this year became the first Big Tech company to announce a second round of mass layoffs, after showing more than 11,000 employees the door in the fall. The cuts brought the company’s headcount down to where it stood as of about mid-2021, following a hiring spree that doubled its workforce since 2020.
The company’s shares closed marginally up in a broadly weaker market. They have more than doubled in value this year and are among the top performers in the S&P 500 index .SPX, thanks to the cost-cutting drive and Meta’s focus on artificial intelligence.
Meta Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg in March said the bulk of the layoffs in the company’s second round would take place in three “moments” over several months, largely finishing in May. Some smaller rounds could continue after that, he said.
Overall the cuts have hit non-engineering roles most heavily, reinforcing the primacy of those who write the code at Meta. Zuckerberg has pledged to restructure business teams “substantially” and return to a “more optimal ratio of engineers to other roles.”
Even among cuts aimed specifically at technology teams, the company has eliminated non-engineering roles like content design and user experience research most severely, according to executives speaking at a company town hall after the last round of layoffs in April.
About 4,000 employees lost their jobs in April, Zuckerberg said during the town hall, following a smaller hit to recruiting teams in March.
The social media company said on Wednesday that the latest cuts were likely to impact around 490 employees at its international headquarters in Dublin, or almost 20% of its Irish workforce.
Two top executives in key market India – director of marketing Avinash Pant and Saket Jha Saurabh, director and head of media partnerships – were also let go, according to two people with direct knowledge of the matter.
The two executives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Meta’s layoffs followed months of waning revenue growth amid high inflation and a digital ad pullback from the pandemic e-commerce boom.
The company also has been pouring billions of dollars into its metaverse-oriented Reality Labs unit, which lost $13.7 billion in 2022, and a project to whip its infrastructure into shape to support artificial intelligence work.
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