Amazon plans to lay off 10,000 employees

Jeff Bezos in front of a table. Drew Angerer/Getty, Inc. plans to cut 10,000 jobs as soon as next week, the largest layoffs in the company’s history and the latest mass firings by technology companies.

The cuts will focus mostly on the devices division, which develops Amazon’s Alexa, as well as the retail division and human resources, the New York Times reported, citing people close to the matter.

If the cuts total 10,000, that would be 3% of Amazon’s corporate employees and less than 1% of its global workforce.

Key Takeaways

  • Amazon plans to lay off 10,000 employees
  • Other companies, like Meta and Twitter, have also laid off thousands of employees in the last month
  • The top 5 technology companies by revenue have seen a nearly $4 trillion loss in market value this past year

Tech Layoffs

The threat of a looming recession has led major tech companies to fire significant portions of their staffs.

Elon Musk fired half of Twitter. Inc.'s staff in October, and last week Facebook’s parent company, Meta Inc., said it would fire 11,000 employees, or 13% of its overall workforce. 

Online retail companies like Amazon have also had massive layoffs. GoPuff, the consumer goods and food delivery company, had four rounds of layoffs throughout 2022, totaling 2,300 fired employees.

Lyft, Inc.; Stripe, Inc.; Peloton Interactive, Inc.; and other major technology companies have all had major layoffs in the last few months.

The cuts come after many corporations overhired during the pandemic, when e-commerce and social media companies experienced a massive boom. Microsoft, Meta, and Google’s parent company Alphabet expanded their staff by upward of 20% in the 12 months through September 30.

Amazon's Decline

Amazon also grew during the pandemic. Not only was it the most profitable era for the company on record, but Amazon also doubled its workforce from the beginning of 2020 to the end of 2021.

The company, like others that thrived during the first year of pandemic, has not done as well in the last year. The top five technology companies by revenue have lost almost $4 trillion in market value this past year, with Amazon becoming the first company to lose $1 trillion in market value on Wednesday.

New Amazon CEO Andy Jassy has looked to pull back and cut costs since taking over last year. One area he looked specifically into was the device unit that produces Alexa, and internal documents show that in recent years it has been operating at a loss of more than $5 billion per year.

Article Sources
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  1. Investopedia, "Largest Layoffs of 2022"

  2. Investopedia, "Largest Layoffs of 2022"

  3. Axios, "Big Tech's hiring splurge makes cost cuts even harder"

  4. The New York Times, "Amazon Is Said to Plan to Lay Off Thousands of Employees"

  5. Bloomberg, "Amazon Becomes World’s First Public Company to Lose $1 Trillion in Market Value"

  6. The Wall Street Journal, "Amazon, in Broad Cost-Cutting Review, Weighs Changes at Alexa and Other Unprofitable Units"

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