If you are working for Meta, parent company of Facebook, you may want to spend the next few days sharpening your CV, as the Wall Street Journal reports that the company if preparing large-scale lay-offs to win back the favour of investors.
Calling the large-scale lay-offs the first ever and the largest-to-date at a tech company this year, the company is reportedly motivated by plans to cut 10% of its expenses and, in the words of CEO Mark Zuckerburg, “focus our investments on a small number of high priority growth areas.”
In an earlier statement, he said:
“So that means some teams will grow meaningfully, but most other teams will stay flat or shrink over the next year,” he said on the company’s third-quarter earnings call on Oct. 26. “In aggregate, we expect to end 2023 as either roughly the same size, or even a slightly smaller organization than we are today.”
The company has already been shaving teams over the last year, with many roles eliminated, but more drastic action is needed after its share price fell more than 70% this year.
For many the immediate reason for the company’s belt-tightening is, however, its largely failed Metaverse venture, which has cost $15 billion over the last year, and which has failed to impress users, with visitors to Horizon Worlds, one of the major Metaverse destinations, falling to well under 200,000 users over the course of the year.
Zuckerberg has however reiterated his support for the venture, saying:
“I get that a lot of people might disagree with this investment. I think people are going to look back on decades from now and talk about the importance of the work that was done here.”
While this pronouncement caused analysts to downgrade Meta’s shares, the company’s share price rose sharply by 3.4% to $93.85 on news of the cost-cutting plans.