“We are deeply affected by the outside world. When we set our goals for 2022 in the fall [de 2021]It was a completely different world from the one we live in today.”
With this phrase, Sebastian Simyatkowski, CEO and co-founder of Klarna, the largest European start-up from Sweden, earlier this week announced the decision to lay off 10% of the team that currently has 6,500 employees globally.
Klarna’s first-quarter results posted a deterioration from $80 million (Q1 2021) to $250 million, and last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that the initiation of “buy now, pay later” payments was looking for A new round of financing could see its value drop from $46 billion to $30 billion, and the purpose of this round is to inject $1 billion in new money.
The tech market has been in decline in recent weeks, leading some analysts to warn of parallels with what happened in 2000/2001 during the dot.com bubble, or the first tech slump after the boom in Internet-related companies. The analogy is not default. To The Next Big Idea, a fund analyst based in the Portuguese market confirmed that today there is another “maturity” and “readiness” to deal with the economic context.
For companies like Klarna, the moment is to focus on their business fundamentals – and in a market where the ‘outside the world’ operates, the ‘outside the world’ factor is very crucial, namely in terms of interest rates. In years when interest rates were historically low, for companies like Klarna that offer consumers alternative credit models to classic credit cards, the environment has been favorable. Now, with interest rates rising or about to go up, that means more costs. “More than ever, we need to focus on what will make us really successful in the future. On that basis we have made some decisions, which are the hardest we have had to make,” said the CEO.
Sebastian Semyatkovsk did not provide information about who and in what role he would be released, but assured that everyone would be compensated. The information will be announced in the coming days and all employees have been asked to work from home this week “in keeping with the privacy of those affected by these changes.”
United States: hundreds to thousands of recurrences
On the other side of the Atlantic, layoffs from startups are nothing new. They started at the beginning of the year and in very large numbers. As was the case with Better.com, a mortgage startup that has laid off more than 3,000 employees (33% of the team) or Peloton, a fitness company that became a star during the pandemic, and has laid off 2,800 people this year. Investment app Robinhood also sent 9% of the team home in April.
In February, London-based event platform Hoppen laid off 138 people (12% of the team).
US stock exchanges reflect what is happening in companies, the Nasdaq is losing 25% compared to last year, and the Dow Jones is 11%.
The layoffs platform, which tracks start-up layoffs since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, has totaled 709 layoffs of a total of 119,503 employees at the time of writing. Kontist, Nuri and Gorillas, the three based in Berlin, are the latest entries, respectively with 50, 45 and 300 redundant.
2021 was unique in terms of the values of investment by venture capital firms: a total of $620 billion, more than double the amount recorded in 2020. By 2021, 150 rhinos were being “born” annually [empresas avaliadas em mais de mil milhões de dólares]; In 2021, this value was exceeded every quarter. “2021 was a strange year because a lot was happening. There was a certain FOMO [Fear of Missing Out]Brian Lee, vice president of research at CB Insights, told CNBC.
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