Which Indian start-up is laying off employees?

Via zoom call: E-scooter provider Bird dismisses 400 employees

Six months ago, the e-scooter startup Bird received $ 275 million in funding. According to its own statements, the e-scooter provider is now laying off almost a third of its employees. The corona virus is apparently forcing the company to take drastic austerity measures.

As Business Insider learned, the startup based in California has laid off around 400 employees.

On Friday morning, the affected employees, who are currently working from home due to the corona pandemic, were informed of this decision via a zoom video conference - however, they only got sound to hear, there was no picture.

Bird emphasizes that the video function was deliberately turned off during the call in order to protect the privacy of the employees.

Julia Black, who claims to be the friend of an affected employee, criticized this approach on Twitter and accused the company of having fired the employees with a previously recorded message. Bird boss Travis VanderZanden denied this in a separate Twitter post. He explained that video conferencing was probably not the best solution. In retrospect, it would have been better to convey the message to each individual employee in a personal conversation, says VanderZanden.

"Layoffs are never easy or convenient and Covid-19 has affected the way they are carried out, at least in the near future," Bird said in a statement to Business Insider.

However, the startup still guarantees those affected four weeks of wages, three months of health insurance and an extended period of twelve months to exercise their stock options.

Startups that rent e-scooters are hit particularly hard by the crisis. Almost all over the world, the coronavirus is forcing people to stay at home. This is why some e-scooter providers have already stopped their services.