Many large companies in the fintech world, jobs have been cut in the past month. And yet, Stripe’s announcement that it would lay off 14% of its workforce still made a splash, proving that unicorns and decacorns are not immune to the challenging economic and fundraising conditions.
The Stripe news follows Chime closely, confirming this week that 12% of its employees would be laid off and Brex revealed last month that it would cut 11% of its workforce.
So what the hell is going on here? Well, according to Spiros Margaris, a fintech venture capitalist and founder of Margaris Ventures, the current layoffs by some of these larger fintech companies were “triggered by the challenging geopolitical market environment and inflationary pressures. It affects the entire fintech startup industry – and all industries globally – as the prominent players have a strategic ripple effect on the smaller players.”
“Firing good employees jeopardizes their strategy to succeed in the grand vision they initially sold to the VC.” Spiros Margaris, Founder, Margaris Ventures
Cameron Peakea partner at Restive Ventures who recently invested in AiPrise agreed, noting via email that much of what we’re seeing today was “the dynamics we saw last year,” including all the “big rounds of funding, sunny market projections.” and a belief that companies needed more people to fuel their growth.”
What resulted was “a lack of discipline around the fundamentals of the company,” she added. As the frenzy faded, companies realized “not only were they ahead of their skis, they needed to cut back to focus more on profitability,” she said.