SoftBank-backed educational technology unicorn Unacademy has laid off 10% of its workforce, or approximately 350 employees, in the third wave of layoffs in less than a year. In an internal communication to staff, Unacademy cofounder and CEO Gaurav Munjal cited the necessity to decrease costs amid challenging economic conditions as the cause for the layoffs.
Unacademy, an education technology company, laid off 10% of its workers, or almost 350 employees, on Monday, as the Indian startup ecosystem faces a funding crunch.
Gaurav Munjal, the company’s CEO and co-founder, stated in an internal email to staff that approximately 10% of its employees across the group will be impacted. If you are one of those impacted, you will receive a thorough letter from HR within 48 hours.
The CEO further stated that the impacted employees will receive severance compensation equal to their notice term plus two months. Other severance benefits include an accelerated one-year vesting period, medical insurance coverage for an additional year, and dedicated placement and career support.
This comes after big corporations announced layoffs. Twitter has laid off around 90% of its staff in India. Byju’s founder and CEO, Byju Raveendran, announced 2,500 job layoffs a few days ago, citing the need to prevent position duplication and reduce redundancies. Raveendran stated in a memo to staff that Byju has been forced to focus on sustainability and capital-efficient growth due to unfavorable macroeconomic forces.
Unacademy is an Indian online education portal based in Bangalore, Karnataka. It trains students for numerous competitive exams (such as JEE, NEET, UPSC, CA, GATE, UPSC NDA, CUET, Boards, and so on), as well as foundational (K-12) and skill-building courses (programming, photography, entrepreneurship, etc.).
Gaurav Munjal, Hemesh Singh, and Roman Saini launched it in 2015. Unacademy was valued at $3.44 billion in May 2022.
Gaurav Munjal founded Unacademy in 2015 as a YouTube channel while studying engineering in Mumbai.
Gaurav posted a video tutorial on computer graphics on his YouTube account to assist his classmates in preparing for the semester examinations.
Gaurav Munjal enlisted the help of two friends, Hemesh Singh and Roman Saini, and established the Unacademy app in December 2015 to create free interactive content.
Unacademy Plus, a subscription-based concept, was launched in February 2019. The Unacademy Plus Subscription gives students access to live classes taught by educators from all across the country in English and 14 Indian languages such as Hindi, Punjabi, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Bhojpuri, and others.
Unacademy released Graphy in 2020, which allows entrepreneurs to establish an online school in less than 60 seconds. Unacademy will launch its first offline learning center in Kota, Rajasthan, in May 2022.
It had over 1 million learners, 5000 registered educators, and over 40,000 sessions launched by 2017. Unacademy, along with other edtech enterprises such as Simplilearn, UpGrad, Byjus, and Vedantu, became a founding member of IAMAI’s India EdTech Consortium in January 2022.
Munjal’s note also referenced providing an additional year of medical insurance coverage, as well as targeted job placement and career help. “The next several days will be dedicated to assisting members who are departing Unacademy, and I would like to suggest that all functions and teams support this transition,” Munjal added.
Previously, Unacademy laid off 150 staff in June 2022 as part of a performance improvement strategy. Furthermore, in April, the corporation laid off 600 to 800 people from its sales and marketing teams, as well as a few contractual employees and educators or tutors.
The edtech company has already cut off over half of its workers, and the latest round of layoffs would reduce team strength from 6,000 to 3,150. Unacademy has also been aggressively decreasing expenditures since the beginning of the year. It remains to be seen how the company’s founders will handle the wrath it will face when it joins the ranks of corporations that have laid off thousands of people.