Layoff tracker: Mass layoffs by tech companies big and small hit the Bay Area

DoorDash, Meta, Twitter, Stripe, Lyft. Here's an overview of Bay Area tech companies that recently executed a mass layoff.

ByPamela Parker and Lindsey Feingold via KGO logo
Thursday, December 1, 2022 1:17AM
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Facebook parent Meta is laying off 11,000 people, about 13% of its workforce, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a letter to employees Wednesday.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- From Salesforce to Twitter to Meta, thousands of U.S. workers have lost their jobs in brutal mass layoffs in 2022.

San Francisco-based DoorDash announced on Nov. 30 that it is shaving 1,250 jobs or 6% of its workforce in an effort to rein in operating cost in a challenging post-pandemic, macro environment.

For a growing number of companies, there have been second and third rounds of cuts. These include Stripe, which cut around 1,000 in November after laying off around 50 people (from TaxJar, a Stripe acquisition) earlier this year, and Lyft, which slashed 683 from its team after laying off 60 people in July. In May, Netflix cut 150 staff members from its workforce and laid off 450 more in June.

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Note: This tracker is developing and will be updated. Companies marked with an asterisk* reflect the total estimated number of staff laid off from multiple rounds of job cuts year-to-date in 2022. The dates mark the latest layoff announcement for all companies.

Here's a more in-depth look at the 10 largest layoffs in the Bay Area this year.

Meta

Staff cut: 11,000 or 13%

Reason: Cost-cutting

Meta announced it is laying off 13% of its staff, or more than 11,000 employees, through a staff letter CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote on Nov. 3.

The company saw overall sales fall 4% to $27.71 billion in the latest quarter. Operating income dropped 46% from the previous year, while costs and expenses rose 19% to $22.1 billion.

In his note, Zuckerberg says impacted employees will receive 16 weeks of pay plus two additional weeks for every year of service. Meta will cover the health insurance of staff receiving redundancy for six months.

Twitter

Staff cut: 3,700 or 50%

Reason: New owner

After the deal to take over Twitter for $44 billion closed, the social media company's new owner, Elon Musk, fired Twitter's CEO along with several top executives. It was previously suggested he would cut 75% of its pre-takeover workforce. He has since walked that notion back but the company did announce layoffs to half its workforce, with smaller cuts for the team responsible for preventing the spread of misinformation.

According to tweets by Musk, everyone affected was offered three months of severance pay, "Unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4M/day."

DoorDash

Staff cut: 1,250 or 6%

Reason: Streamlining headcount from COVID-19 pandemic, operating expense outpacing revenue growth

During the pandemic with most isolating and not leaving their homes, DoorDash sped up hiring to meet the explosive demand for its food delivery service. However, that demand has tapered and the company is now looking to cut cost.

"While our business continues to grow fast, given how quickly we hired, our operating expenses - if left unabated - would continue to outgrow our revenue," DoorDash CEO Tony Xu said in a note released to staff on Nov. 30.

Impacted staff will receive 17 weeks (13 weeks + 1 four-week lump sum severance pay) of compensation, as well as a February 2023 stock vest. All health benefits will continue through March 31, 2023. Those laid off will also receive immigration support, with the company setting the termination date for March 1, 2023, giving those with visa applications (and a desire to stay in the US) as much time as possible to find a new job.

Coinbase

Staff cut: 1160 or 18%

Reason: Cost-cutting

San Francisco based crypto company Coinbase continues shedding headcount, cutting an additional 60 workers in November after losing an initial 1,100 -- 18% of its workforce -- in June 2022 through a CEO letter.

Coinbase CEO and Cofounder Brian Armstrong attributes the cuts to growing too quickly and the need to manage costs in down markets.

Transaction revenue fell 44% compared to the second quarter with fewer users active on the crypto exchange, according to the company's earnings report. The stock is also down nearly 80% this year.

In the June message, Armstrong said affected members would get a minimum of 14 weeks of severance plus an additional 2 weeks for every year of employment beyond 1 year. U.S. staff will also get four months of health insurance.

Stripe

Staff cut: 1,000 or 14%

Reason: Macroeconomic challenges

In his note to staff announcing the layoffs, Stripe CEO Patrick Collison said the company will cut staffing numbers by around 14%.

Collison cited macroeconomic headwinds such as stubborn inflation, energy shocks, higher interest rates, reduced investment budgets, and sparser startup funding as the challenges that face the business.

"Around 14% of people at Stripe will be leaving the company. We, the founders, made this decision. We overhired for the world we're in...and it pains us to be unable to deliver the experience that we hoped that those impacted would have at Stripe," he said.

The company will pay 14 weeks of severance for all departing employees, and more for those with longer tenure. Those departing will be paid until at least February 21, 2023.

All departing staff will still receive their 2022 annual bonus regardless of their departure date. It will be prorated for people hired in 2022.

The company has also promised to pay the cash equivalent of six months of existing healthcare premiums or healthcare continuation.

Earlier this year, Stripe was reported to have laid off an estimated 50 people from TaxJar, a tax compliance startup that it acquired in 2021.

Robinhood

Staff cut: 1000 or 29% (calculated from a combination of two rounds of staff cuts)

Reason: Cost-cutting/Macroeconomic challenges

Menlo Park-based online discount brokerage company Robinhood cut an estimated 1,000 workers over two layoffs. The first round of cuts were in April 2022 where the company cut 9% of its nearly 3,900 workforce. The latest cuts, announced through a letter from CEO Vlad Tenev on Aug 2, report that 23% of its total staff will be cut.

Tenev said in his blog post that earlier this year the company let go of 9% of the workforce "to focus on greater cost discipline throughout the organization. This did not go far enough."

"Since that time, we have seen additional deterioration of the macro environment, with inflation at 40-year highs accompanied by a broad crypto market crash. This has further reduced customer trading activity and assets under custody," he said.

Departing workers will be offered the opportunity to remain employed with Robinhood through October 1, 2022 and receive their regular pay and benefits, including equity vesting. They will also be offered cash severance, payment of COBRA medical, dental and vision insurance premiums and job search assistance -- including an opt-in Robinhood Alumni Talent Directory.

Twilio

Staff cut: 900 or 11%

Reason: Grew too fast/ profitability concerns

In September, Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson published a note to inform staff that a restructure would reduce Twilio's workforce by 11%.

The San Francisco-based cloud communications specialist had 8,199 employees as of March 31, 2022, according to a press release of its first quarter 2022 financial results.

"Twilio has grown at an astonishing rate over the past couple years. It was too fast, and without enough focus on our most important company priorities. I take responsibility for those decisions," Lawson said in his blog.

Impacted workers will receive 12 weeks of pay, plus one week for every year of service at Twilio. Departing staff can also expect to receive the value of Twilio's next stock vest.

Lyft

Staff cut: 743 or 14%

Reason: Economic conditions

In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Nov. 3, Lyft said 683 employees would be let go as part of a restructuring plan to combat a probable recession and worsening economic conditions.

Those leaving can expect ten weeks of pay, healthcare coverage through next April, accelerated equity vesting and recruiting assistance. Staff who have worked at the company for four years or more will be given an extra four weeks salary.

This is an additional round of layoffs since the San Francisco-based rideshare company laid off 60 employees in July after winding down its in-house car rental division.

Opendoor

Staff cut: 550 or 18%

Reason: Market downturn

Real Estate technology company Opendoor announced cuts to its workforce by 18% -- 550 workers -- on Nov. 3 through a note by co-founder and CEO Eric Wu. Wu said that "one of the most challenging real estate markets in 40 years" had spurred the need to adjust the business.

Prior to this layoff the proptech firm had already reduced capacity by over 830 positions, primarily by reducing third party resourcing and eliminating fixed expenses.

Affected workers will receive ten weeks of pay with an additional two weeks of pay for every full year beyond two years of tenure. Healthcare benefits will remain active for the rest of the month plus an additional three months of health insurance. Job transition support will also be offered by the firm.

Netflix

Staff cut: 450 or 3%

Reason: Cost-cutting/slowing revenue growth

In June, Santa Clara-based streaming giant Netflix announced 300 jobs cut in a second round of layoffs as subscriptions fell and revenue slowed. This comes hot on the heels of the 150 workers already let go in May.

The company released a statement to staff that said, "While we continue to invest significantly in the business, we made these adjustments so that our costs are growing in line with our slower revenue growth."

Netflix stock is down 51.84% year-to-date as of Nov. 11.

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