Amazon hardware head confirms layoffs in memo • TechCrunch

Update: Spokesperson Kelly Nantel tells TechCrunch, “As part of our annual operating planning review process, we always look at each of our businesses and what we believe we should change. As we’ve gone through this, given the current macro-economic environment (as well as several years of rapid hiring), some teams are making adjustments, which in some cases means certain roles are no longer necessary. We don’t take these decisions lightly, and we are working to support any employees who may be affected.”

While Amazon has yet to confirm the size or scoop of its most recent round of layoffs, the company today posted the text of a letter from Senior Vice President of Devices & Services, Dave Limp, that sheds light on the situation.

The note, which was initially sent to the company’s Devices and Services org, confirms a “consolidation” of teams within the division.

“After a deep set of reviews, we recently decided to consolidate some teams and programs. One of the consequences of these decisions is that some roles will no longer be required,” Limp writes. “It pains me to have to deliver this news as we know we will lose talented Amazonians from the Devices & Services org as a result. I am incredibly proud of the team we have built and to see even one valued team member leave is never an outcome any of us want.”

The memo is a confirmation of earlier reports that the company begun to inform employees yesterday. Amazon reportedly gave employees two months to find another role inside the company or accept severance. Limp adds that all impacted employees in that org were notified of the decision yesterday.

“In cases where employees cannot find a new role within the company,” the executive writes, “we will support the transition with a package that includes a separation payment, transitional benefits, and external job placement support.”

The moves follow a report earlier this week that puts the company-wide figure at 10,000 – amounting to roughly 3% of the overall corporate headcount. Devices were an easy target for corporate belt tightening, given reports that they’ve been losing $5 billion in annual revenue for Amazon. Human Resources, retail and the cloud gaming platform, Luna, are also said to be targets.

“While I know this news is tough to digest,” Limp writes, “I do want to emphasize that the Devices & Services organization remains an important area of investment for Amazon, and we will continue to invent on behalf of our customers.”

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