Amazon to lay off 17,000 corporate and tech workers, more than previously expected – GeekWire


Amazon workers and others near The Spheres on the company’s Seattle headquarters campus last fall. (GeekWire Photo / Kurt Schlosser)

Amazon’s cuts into its corporate and tech ranks could affect more than 17,000 employees, according to a report Wednesday in The Wall Street Journal. That number would be significantly greater than the 10,000 who were reportedly expected to be cut when layoffs first began in November.

Citing sources familiar with the matter, the Journal said thousands of layoffs have already taken place and the remainder of cuts will be made over the coming weeks.

GeekWire has reached out to Amazon for comment and will update this story when we hear back.

People familiar with the matter told GeekWire in November that the number of employees being laid off is fluid, because the decisions are being made in individual divisions. Those sources said there was no companywide target.

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy previously stated that layoffs would continue into 2023.

“Our annual planning process extends into the new year, which means there will be more role reductions as leaders continue to make adjustments reports,” Jassy said in a memo posted on Amazon’s blog on Nov. 17.

Layoffs were expected to target those working on the company’s Echo devices and Alexa voice assistant, retail operations, and human resources.

The Journal noted that the 17,000 figure would represent the largest layoffs revealed so far during a wave of cutbacks at major tech companies.

Amazon previously 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.

Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky told analysts on Amazon’s most recent earnings call that the company was preparing for “what could be a slower growth period” due to increased foreign currency headwinds, global inflation, fuel prices, and rising energy costs.

If the job cuts impact as many workers as expected, they would be the largest in the history of the Seattle tech giant.

Amazon went on a hiring spree during the pandemic to help meet demand as more people shopped online. The company employs 75,000 people in the Seattle region, many of them corporate and tech workers, as part of its workforce of 1.54 million people around the world, including warehouse workers who would not be impacted.


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