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Technology industry job cuts hit 20,000 across 85 tech companies in January, raising concerns about further layoffs in the sector

January witnessed a surge in tech industry layoffs, with over 20,000 employees being laid off across 85 technology companies. This marks the highest number of job cuts in the sector since March, when almost 38,000 individuals faced terminations, according to Layoffs.fyi. Several prominent companies contributed to this wave of layoffs, with SAP announcing a reduction of 8,000 positions, Microsoft eliminating 1,900 jobs in its gaming division, and fintech startup Brex laying off 20% of its workforce. Additionally, eBay slashed 1,000 jobs, constituting 9% of its full-time employees, and Salesforce let go of about 700 employees, representing roughly 1% of its global workforce.

In the Indian tech landscape, major players are also contemplating workforce reductions. Flipkart is reportedly considering a downsizing initiative that could result in a 5-7% reduction in its team size. Curefit, backed by Zomato, recently executed a restructuring exercise, leading to the termination of approximately 120 employees. Swiggy is anticipated to announce layoffs in preparation for its planned IPO.



Tech layoffs jump in January as Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft reach high
Tech layoffs jump in January as Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft reach high

Global tech giants such as Google and Amazon have not been immune to this trend. Google confirmed the elimination of several hundred jobs, while Amazon cut positions across its Prime Video, MGM Studios, Twitch, and Audible divisions. Unity, a video game development company, announced a 25% reduction in its workforce, and Discord, known for its messaging service popular among gamers, is shedding 17% of its employees. Riot Games, the developer behind the popular multiplayer battle game “League of Legends,” reduced its staff by 11%, amounting to 530 job cuts. These layoffs come ahead of a busy week for tech earnings, with Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Meta, and Microsoft scheduled to report quarterly results.

Comparisons with last year’s job cuts reveal that layoffs peaked in January 2023 when 277 technology companies terminated nearly 90,000 jobs. This period marked the end of a more than decade-long bull market, compelling the tech industry to confront a downturn. Most of the rightsizing efforts occurred in the first quarter of 2023, subsided through September, before experiencing a slight uptick toward the end of the year.

Within Meta, CEO Mark Zuckerberg characterized 2023 as the “year of efficiency,” signaling a strategic shift for the company. The ongoing layoffs across various sectors of the tech industry underscore the continued challenges and adjustments companies are making to navigate changing market conditions and evolving business priorities. The upcoming financial reports from major tech players will provide insights into the broader economic landscape and the sector’s outlook for the coming months.

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