Meta, the owner of Facebook and Instagram, has revealed that 13% of its workforce is being laid off, becoming the latest big tech player to wield the axe in the tougher global economy.
The firm announced on Wednesday it will cut its global workforce by more than 11,000 employees as part of a wider shake-up of the business that aims to drastically cut costs.
Meta staff were being told what was happening to them individually via email.
Those affected in the US would get at least six weeks salary as compensation, plus a further two weeks’ wages for every year served.
The arrangements would be similar elsewhere, the company said, though it was unclear whether any UK jobs were affected. Meta has its European HQ in Ireland.
Founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg told staff in an internal email explaining the changes that he wanted “to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here.”
He admitted his own plans for growth had been too optimistic, saying “I was wrong” when outlining how Meta had bet on continued high demand for e-commerce after the worst of the COVID pandemic.
Zuckerberg had faced calls from top shareholders to slash costs following two consecutive quarters of falling revenue.
Some has been due to declining ad sales across its platforms.
But investors are also concerned about Meta’s big spending on its virtual and augmented reality division called Reality Labs.
They have called Zuckerberg’s metaverse vision into question – with shares down 71% in the year to date – as it remains unclear whether the prospects for applications in the space are overblown.
Zuckerberg wrote: “While we’re making reductions in every organization across both Family of Apps and Reality Labs, some teams will be affected more than others.
However, he signalled a continued investment commitment to the division.
He added: “Recruiting will be disproportionately affected since we’re planning to hire fewer people next year.
“We’re also restructuring our business teams more substantially.”
The job cuts are the latest among major tech players.
Twitter under Elon Musk’s ownership is understood to have slashed its workforce by almost half last week while Microsoft was reported to have shed 1,000 staff in October.