Vox Media to Lay Off 6% of Staff as Pandemic Drags On

Some of those affected were already furloughed amid the pandemic while others were still working

Vox Media announced Thursday plans to lay off 6% of its staff in the latest sign of media troubles as the coronavirus pandemic drags on.

In internal email reviewed by TheWrap, CEO Jim Bankoff said the majority of those laid off had already been impacted by furloughs, but some were still working. The company — whose media properties include New York Magazine, The Verge, SBNation and Eater — has roughly 1,200 employees overall.

“We will be laying off 6% of our employees. These layoffs include furloughed colleagues as well as other employees who were not on furlough,” he wrote. “The roles affected have experienced substantial changes in workload or business priority; in some cases they are in areas undergoing a strategic shift accelerated by the crisis and its hastened changes to our industry. The majority of those impacted today were furloughed in May. We have already or will bring back close to 30% of furloughed employees who did not take buyouts.”

Bankoff blamed the cuts on overly optimistic projections for recovery. In May, he said, the company had hoped “that business would bounce back in the months that followed” — but that didn’t happen.

In April, Vox Media furloughed roughly 100 employees — 9% of the overall staff — and cut the pay of many others in response to the pandemic. The teams affected included sales, sales support, production, events, SB Nation’s and Curbed’s editorial divisions and support functions like IT and Office Operations.

These job losses follow numerous layoffs, pay cuts and furloughs at other media companies over the past few months.

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