Apr 9, 2020 - Technology

Yelp cutting 1,000 jobs, furloughing others

An image from a Yelp donation program launched in the wake of Covid-19
An image from a Yelp donation program launched in the wake of Covid-19. Photo: Yelp

Yelp told employees Thursday that it is cutting 1,000 jobs and furloughing another 1,100 workers amid a massive drop in its business.

Why it matters: Yelp is the latest company catering to small businesses that has seen much of its customer base decimated amid the COVID-19 outbreak and related shutdowns.

What they're saying: "This rapid shutdown of local economies has directly affected our business, and the magnitude and duration of the impact are unknown," Yelp said in a statement. "To ensure that Yelp can weather this crisis and be best positioned to serve the community when the recovery begins, we must significantly reduce our operating costs."

Context: Yelp had 5,950 employees as of the end of 2019.

The big picture: Yelp has seen customer interest in restaurants down 64% since March 10, with nightlife, gyms and beauty salons down 70% or more, CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said in an employee email posted to the company's website.

All told, the millions of local businesses hit hardest by the effects of COVID-19 face the prospect of closing and laying off their employees, without knowing when, or if, they’ll be able to reopen.
— Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman

The company is also:

  • cutting server costs;
  • deprioritizing dozens of projects; and
  • cutting executive pay by 20% to 30%.

And Stoppelman is not taking a salary and will not vest any further stock awards this year.

Flashback: Yelp last month launched a $25 million program giving ad credits to small businesses and also partnered with GoFundMe on a donation program, though it was forced to revamp the program after some customers complained.

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