Carousell is laying off 110 employees amid a deteriorating macroeconomic environment

Singapore’s leading mobile classifieds unicorn has laid off 110 employees (10 percent of the group’s total workforce), citing a deteriorating macroeconomic environment.

Only employees in some business areas are affected. The departing employees are offered a monthly salary for each year of service, rounded up to the next six months. Everyone receives at least three months compensation.

Announcing the job cuts in a blog post, Carousell co-founder and CEO Quek Siu Rui said: “As we emerged from the 2021 COVID-19 lockdowns in our group’s key markets, we were optimistic and excited about the recovery ahead and growth in boost our core business, classifieds. We’ve also reinforced a number of new initiatives to make selling and buying more convenient and trustworthy, making second-hand the first choice for even more people in the region. That meant we had to form more teams to work on these initiatives, including new teammates that we had to hire.”

Also Read:Carousell Joins Unicorn Club After New $100M Round Led by Korea’s STIC Investments

“Looking back, I made the following critical mistakes: First, I was overly optimistic about the pace of our impact versus our increase in investment. The reality is that we increased our spending and attitudes quickly, but the return took longer than expected. Second, while it’s easy to blame market conditions, I also underestimated the impact of growing our team size too quickly – larger teams lead to a lack of clarity in decision-making and the extra coordination needed to get things done do it,” he continued.

Siu Rui admitted that as early as March this year, the company saw the signs of a perfect long storm: high inflation, geopolitical risks and supply chain disruptions.

Things have taken a turn for the worse in the past few weeks. The global economy continues to face major challenges, with economists expecting a broad-based slowdown in 2023. The deteriorating macroeconomic environment creates more headwinds for expected growth.

“We can’t change the wind, but we can adjust our sails,” he said. “As we do not know when market conditions will improve, it only makes sense that as a group we move to profitability as soon as possible to master our destiny and build a lasting company.”

He went on to say it is important to act quickly, correct course and right-size investment levels to better adapt to this new reality. The company moves to an office with significantly lower rents, and the co-founders and senior management take voluntary pay cuts.

Also Read:Carousell Acquires Ox Street to Double Its Re-Commerce Efforts in Greater SEA

Carousell needs to reorganize to focus on critical priorities and operate more efficiently to accelerate the path to profitability.

“We will learn from our mistakes, adapt quickly and correct course to have the greatest impact on our community. Going forward, we will sharpen our priorities as a company, keeping an eye on costs and only investing in high-conviction initiatives that are properly positioned for success,” said Carousell’s CEO.

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