Wednesday, June 19, 2024
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Amazon said Wednesday that it will be cutting about 18,000 positions. It’s the largest set of layoffs in the Seattle-based company’s history, although just a fraction of its 1.5 million global workforce. Amazon and business software maker Salesforce are the latest US technology companies to announce major job cuts as they prune payrolls that rapidly expanded during the pandemic lockdown.

“Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so,” CEO Andy Jassy said in a note to employees that the company made public. “These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure.”

He said the layoffs will mostly impact the company’s brick-and-mortar stores, which include Amazon Fresh and Amazon Go, and its PXT organizations, which handle human resources and other functions.

In November, Jassy told staff that layoffs were coming due to the economic landscape and the company’s rapid hiring in the last several years. Wednesday’s announcement included earlier job cuts that had not been numbered. The company had also offered voluntary buyouts and has been cutting costs in other areas of its sprawling business.

Salesforce, meanwhile, said it is laying off about 8,000 employees, or 10% of its workforce.

The cuts announced Wednesday are by far the largest in the 23-year history of a San Francisco company founded by former Oracle executive Marc Benioff. Benioff pioneered the method of leasing software services to internet-connected devices — a concept now known as “cloud computing.”

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