As cities vie for Amazon’s “HQ2” location, the tech giant is laying off hundreds of workers at its Seattle headquarters, a person close to the matter confirms to TheWrap.
The job cuts will primarily impact its consumer retail team. The Seattle Times, which first reported the story on Monday, said several hundred jobs will be cut from Amazon’s global operations as well.
Amazon did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.
“As part of our annual planning process, we are making head count adjustments across the company — small reductions in a couple of places and aggressive hiring in many others,” a spokesman told the Seattle Times. “For affected employees, we work to find roles in the areas where we are hiring.”
Amazon has been on a hiring spree in recent years, and has about 4,000 open job listings in Seattle. But CEO Jeff Bezos and other execs have been focused on trimming “lower performers” and excess spending.
“People are in terrible shape,” one Amazon employee told The Seattle Times. “There is so much stress on campus.”
2017 was a banner year for the e-commerce kingpin, with the company adding 130,000 employees. And in the last year, shares of Amazon stock have increased more than 50 percent — vaulting Bezos to the top of the billionaire food chain in the process. After acquiring Whole Foods midway through the year, its full and part-time employee count swelled to more than 550,000 workers.
At the same time, Amazon has narrowed its search for its second North American headquarters to 20 cities, including Dallas, Chicago and New York City. Amazon said it plans on investing up to $5 billion and adding 50,000 new jobs when it picks the winning city.