Amazon is going ahead with its plans to lay off more than 18,000 employees — a significantly larger number than previously thought— in the latest sign that a technology crisis is deepening.
The cuts are the largest in Amazon’s 28-year history.
The figure would represent the largest layoffs revealed so far during a wave of cutbacks at major tech companies.
Amazon has joined major firms like Tesla in drastically increasing measures to reduce their workforce through drastic layoffs.
The wave of layoffs at Amazon will hit thousands more people than originally expected.
On Wednesday evening, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy broke the news in an Amazon blog post.
In November, when news of layoffs first broke, Amazon said the number of impacted roles remained fluid as leaders evaluated each part of the business. At the time, it was expected that the layoffs would affect about 10,000 people and that the job cuts would extend into the New Year.
In a message to employees posted on the blog, Jassy for the first time announced the number of layoffs the company is making as it aims to trim expenses amid uncertain macroeconomic conditions.
A majority of the cuts within the company will affect Amazon Stores, the company's retail arm, and People, Experience, and Technology, its HR arm, Jassy said in the memo.
“These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure; however, I’m also optimistic that we’ll be inventive, resourceful, and scrappy in this time when we’re not hiring expansively and eliminating some roles,” Jassy wrote.
He had previously addressed the cuts in November, stating that layoffs would continue into 2023.
Earlier, media reports in November estimated the expected number of cuts at around 10,000 people, although Amazon never gave a specific target.
Amazon earlier told employees that it would freeze corporate hiring, and the layoffs match moves made by Meta, Twitter, Lyft, Redfin, Convoy, Stripe, Flyhomes and many more companies looking for ways to cut costs amid a slowing economy. Salesforce on Wednesday said it was slashing 10% of its workforce.