Softbank-backed ed-tech firm Unacademy has fired 10 per cent of its employees in a bid to reduce monthly losses and operational spending. This is the second time in a year the unicorn has taken this extreme step to minimise its widening losses.
In an e-mail to employees, Unacademy CEO Gaurav Munjal said that he was deeply saddened to share that the company will have to say goodbye to some of its extremely talented employees. He said these would be across the group from verticals where the company has to take a difficult decision either to scale down or shut.
“Around 10% of Unacademy employees across the group will be impacted because of this, and if you are one of the impacted – you will be receiving a detailed communication within 48 hours from HR,” he said.
In April this year, the Bengaluru-headquartered unicorn had taken a similar step when it had laid off nearly 600 employees, constituting nearly 10 per cent of its employee base. Those asked to leave mostly comprised educators/tutors and contractual employees.
Munjal began his email by saying, “We are no strangers to the harsh economic conditions that everyone is witnessing these days. There are very difficult times for the technology ecosystem. And things are getting worse with each passing day.”
The CEO apologised for the layoffs and said that the decision was due to a slowdown in funding and core businesses moving offline. “I want to apologise to everyone sincerely since we made a commitment of no layoffs in the organisation but the market challenges have forced us to reevaluate our decisions. Funding has significantly slowed down and a large portion of our core business has moved offline,” Munjal wrote.
Munjal said that this decision has not been easy and “I take full responsibility”. “There is no easy way to do this and this is definitely not the kind of separation I would have wanted,” he said.
The company will provide severance pay equivalent to one’s notice period and an additional two months besides medical coverage for an additional year.