Meta purges 13% workforce, may affect Nigerians in diaspora
Meta, Facebook’s parent company has announced it will lay off 13 per cent of its global workforce. Chief Executive Officer, Meta, Mark Zuckerberg, who confirmed this yesterday, said about 11,000 persons would be affected by the purge.
The company will also cut discretionary spending and extend its hiring freeze through Q1,2023, meaning that the company will not be hiring until after the stated period.
It was gathered that part of this cost-cutting includes laying off thousands of its workforce across the globe, which would also affect Nigerians in the diaspora and in Africa. As at 2016, some 18 brilliant Nigerians worked closely with Zukerberg as some came with him to Nigeria when he visited the country in 2016 and 2018.
Sources monitoring developments at the social media platform claimed that over the last five years, the number of Nigerians working at Meta has increased due to the brilliance demonstrated by Nigerian employees.
The mass layoffs, the first in Meta’s 18-year history, follow thousands of job cuts at other major tech companies including Elon Musk-owned Twitter and Microsoft Corp
In a message to Meta’s staff shared in the Meta Newsroom, Zuckerberg explained that aside from the layoffs, the company is taking other measures to cut costs. He hinted that the company had over-invested at the start of COVID-19 and now making efforts toward correction.
“Today I’m sharing some of the most difficult changes we’ve made in Meta’s history. I’ve decided to reduce the size of our team by about 13 per cent and let more than 11,000 of our talented employees go. We are also taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1.
“I want to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here. I know this is tough for everyone, and I’m especially sorry to those impacted,” he added.
Meta now expects 2023 expenses of as much as $100 billion, compared with up to $100 billion previously, with more of the resources being focused on areas such as artificial intelligence, ads, business platforms and the metaverse.
Meta, whose stock has plunged 71 per cent this year, is taking steps to pare costs following several quarters of disappointing earnings and a slide in revenue. The retrenchment, the company’s most drastic since the founding of Facebook in 2004, reflects a sharp slowdown in the digital advertising market, an economy wobbling on the brink of recession and Zuckerberg’s multibillion-dollar investment in a speculative virtual-reality push called the metaverse.
Zuckerberg said at Meta, employees will continue to have access to their emails so that they can say goodbye to colleagues, though they’ve been cut off from more sensitive corporate systems.
He said U.S. workers, who were cut will also get 16 weeks of their base salary as severance, plus two weeks for every year they worked at the company. The company is also offering six months of health-care coverage as well as career services and immigration support. Packages will be similar outside the US, in keeping with local employment laws.
Zuckerberg had warned employees in late September that Meta intended to slash expenses and restructure teams to adapt to a changing market. The Menlo Park, California-based company, which also owns Instagram and WhatsApp, implemented a hiring freeze, and the CEO said at the time that Meta expected headcount to be smaller in 2023 than it is this year.