Bengaluru: In another blow to the Indian edtech sector, startup Unacademy has cut 350 jobs which is set to affect 10% of the workforce across the group, according to an internal mail circulated to the employees.
In the mail to his employees, co-founder and CEO of Unacademy, Gaurav Munjal apologised to the ones being fired for reneging on the platform’s commitment to not lay off any more staff and finding other ways to reduce expenses.
The mail circulated to Unacademy employees by CEO Gaurav Munjal
“I want to apologise to everyone sincerely since we made a commitment of no layoffs in the organisation but the market challenges have forced us to reevaluate our decisions. Funding has significantly slowed down and a large portion of our core business has moved offline,” Gaurav said in his mail to employees.
Though Unacademy took steps such as reducing monthly burns, controlling operational spends, limiting marketing budgets and identifying other redundancies within the organisation, it didn’t prove to be enough, according to the mail.
“I am deeply saddened to share that we will have to say goodbye to some of our extremely talented Unacademy employees. These would be across the Unacademy Group from verticals where we have to take a difficult decision either to scale down or shut,” Gaurav continued.
Benefits to parting members
While signifying the contribution of the Unacademy team, the parting members have been promised certain benefits, which includes, severance pay equivalent of their notice period and an additional two months, accelerated 1 year vesting period, medical insurance coverage for additional one year with a dedicated placement and career support.
“The next few days will be about helping the members who are leaving Unacademy and I would like to request all functions and teams to support this transition,” the mail ended on this note.
While confirming the development, an official from Unacademy said that the company is “deeply apologetic about the layoffs and for not keeping up on their promise to not undertake any such decision.”
The unicorn had made a similar decision in April 2022, when it laid off 600 employees including its on-roll staff and contractual educators.
The Softbank-backed edtech giant had cited slowdown in venture funding and tightening of the overall economy as a reason for the decision back then.
Unacademy’s move is reminiscent of its counterpart Byju’s decision to fire 2,500 employees across the board from its 50,000 odd workforce. Byju’s also sent out an apology mail to its employees, wherein CEO Byju Raveendran attributed macroeconomic conditions as one of the major reasons for the employees getting fired.
The brewing crisis in edtech is not just limited to giants like Byju’s and Unacademy, as platforms such as Polish education company Brainly and learning platform Practically have also fired much of their staff in India.