Former employees of the Calm meditation app may need to stop and take a deep breath.
On Thursday, the company’s CEO, David Ko, announced layoffs affecting 20% of its roughly 400 employees in a memo to staff seen by Gizmodo. That 20% translates into about 90 employees. The memo comes amid a growing wave of layoffs in the tech industry that has left tens of thousands of tech workers looking for new jobs.
In his memo, Ko said the decision came in an effort to focus on growth and efficiency.
“I can assure you this was not an easy decision, but it is especially difficult for a company like ours whose mission is to focus on mental health and wellness in the workplace,” Ko said in the memo. “We have not made this decision lightly, but are confident that these changes will help us prioritize for the future, focus on growth and become a more efficient organization.”
Widely regarded as a leader in the increasingly crowded brokerage app market, Calm reached a valuation of more than $2 billion in 2020 and has reportedly received investment backing from Goldman Sachs and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, according to Bloomberg. Ko said the company will hold a meeting Friday to discuss the layoffs in more detail.
The unpleasant news of Calm has become a matter of course for tech companies. Layoffs have hit almost every corner of the industry, affecting everything from AI and fintech startups to cryptocurrency companies and just about everything in between. Only in recent months, NetflixKlarna, share pileTesla, and Coinbase all have announced layoffs of varying sizes. In short, Crunchbase estimates some 34,000 tech workers lost their jobs in 2022. Unemployment claims Overall, the US economy is meanwhile at its eight-year high.