Amazon announced on Monday that it will lay off another 9,000 employees across various divisions, including its cloud computing unit AWS, its livestreaming platform Twitch and its advertising business. The move comes as the tech giant faces a slowing economy and rising costs.
In a memo to staff, CEO Andy Jassy said the layoffs were part of the company’s effort to be leaner and more efficient in 2023. He said the company had completed its second phase of annual planning, known internally as OP2, and had taken into account the uncertainty in the near future.
“The overriding tenet of our annual planning this year was to be leaner while doing so in a way that enables us to still invest robustly in the key long-term customer experiences that we believe can meaningfully improve customers’ lives and Amazon as a whole,” Jassy wrote.
The latest round of job cuts will affect employees in AWS1, Twitch2, advertising3 and human resources4. Jassy said he expected most of the layoffs to be completed by the end of April.
This is not the first time Amazon has reduced its workforce this year. The company previously eliminated more than 18,000 roles in its retail, devices, recruiting and human resources groups between November 2021 and January 20224.
Amazon’s layoffs come after a period of rapid expansion during the Covid-19 pandemic, when it hired hundreds of thousands of workers to meet surging demand for online shopping and delivery services. The company’s global headcount grew from 798,000 at the end of 2019 to more than 1.6 million at the end of 20214.
However, Amazon has also faced challenges such as slowing growth in its core e-commerce business, rising competition from rivals like Walmart and Shopify, regulatory scrutiny over its market power and labor practices, and higher costs for wages, transportation and infrastructure.
Jassy said he remained optimistic about Amazon’s future despite these difficulties. He said he was proud of how Amazon had innovated and served customers during the pandemic. He also highlighted some of the areas where Amazon planned to invest heavily this year, such as artificial intelligence.