Tech and startup leaders keep doling out layoff notices as the market spirals--and workers at electric vehicle (EV), mobility and transportation startups are particularly at risk.
EV workforce woes are the latest symptom of an uncertain economy, defined by rising gas prices and sky-high tech valuations falling back down to earth. Elon Musk, perhaps the industry’s most visible champion, said he had a “super bad feeling” about the economy as he laid off 10% of Tesla workers in early June. Since the year began, Tesla’s stock price has been sliced in half.
Though the Texas-based EV giant has routinely eliminated roles over the years (including a 7% cut in 2019), some of its rivals are now slashing staff for the first time. The Org’s team of journalists is tracking the latest layoffs and hiring freezes at EV, mobility and transportation startups. The list is in reverse chronological order, with newer announcements at the top, and we’ll be updating it regularly.
Elon Musk's electric vehicle company has made headlines for laying off 200 employees in its Autopilot division, the unit behind its self-driving technology. The cuts, which mainly impacted hourly workers, come as Musk shutters a Tesla facility in California and build on broader news of slashes to the company's payroll. Musk announced a round of layoffs earlier this month affecting 10% of the company's salaried positions.
One of Europe's largest car retailers, Cazoo, is laying off nearly 750 workers, or about 15% of its workforce. "It is expected that the combination of these initiatives will result in cash savings to the company’s budget of over £200m during the period from June 1, 2022 to December 31, 2023 with approximately 750 roles being impacted across the business,” the company said in a statement.
Seattle trucking marketplace software startup Convoy laid off 7% of its staff on June 9, GeekWire reported. The layoffs affect about 90 employees. In April, Convoy raised a $260 million investment round at a $3.8 billion valuation.
Electric scooter and bike startup Bird is reportedly cutting 23% of its workforce, which could affect nearly 140 employees. It's more trouble for the Los Angeles-based enterprise, which also laid off about 30% of staff at the start of the pandemic. Bird's stock price has fallen nearly 80% since it went public in November, with shares now trading at roughly $5 apiece.
The $800 billion electric carmaker is laying off 10% of staff and pause all hiring, Reuters reported on June 3. In an email to the company, CEO Elon Musk wrote that he has "a super bad feeling about the economy." Tesla has regularly slashed its workforce over the past few years in an effort to conserve cash, including a 7% cut in 2019.
TomTom has announced that it will lay off approximately 500 employees. The cuts impact about 10% of the storied geolocation technology company’s global workforce and are focused within its maps unit. In TomTom’s press release, the company cited higher levels of automation and improvements to its mapmaking technology as reasons for the cuts.
Dubai-based mobility startup SWVL is planning to lay off 32% of its workforce, according to a statement the company released on May 30. According to its LinkedIn page, SWVL has more than 1,330 employees, so letting go of more than 30% of its workforce will mean roughly 400 layoffs. SWVL went public via a SPAC merger with U.S. women-led blank check company Queen’s Gambit Growth Capital in March.
Online used car retailer Carvana revealed it had cut approximately 2,500 employees--about 12% of its workforce--in a SEC filing released May 10. The Arizona-based company said the layoffs primarily impacted “operational groups.” Execs are forgoing salaries for the rest of the year to fund the four-week severance packages.