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Twilio Slashes Jobs, CEO 'Not Going to Sugarcoat Things'

Twilio's CEO accepts responsibility for the decisions that led the company to "grow too fast."

Edward Gately

September 14, 2022

3 Min Read
Job Personnel Cuts
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Twilio, the customer engagement platform provider, on Wednesday said it is cutting jobs — 11% of its workforce. The company notified the impacted employees via email.

Jeff Lawson, CEO of Twilio, announced the layoffs in a blog. The cuts impact Twilio workers in the United States and other countries.

“I’m not going to sugarcoat things,” he said. “A layoff is the last thing we want to do, but I believe it’s wise and necessary. Twilio has grown at an astonishing rate over the past couple years. It was too fast, and without enough focus on our most important company priorities. I take responsibility for those decisions, as well as the difficult decision to do this layoff.”

Twilio has always been a growth company, Lawson said. In addition, it commits to being a profitable growth company.

Keep up with our telecom-IT layoff tracker to see which companies are cutting jobs and the ensuing channel impact.

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Twilio’s Jeff Lawson

“At our scale, being profitable will make us stronger,” he said. “It requires us to ask more rigorously which activities and investments are working. It forces us to ask where we have good alignment internally to amplify each of our efforts. This discipline requires us to ask if our investments are getting us where we need to go.”

4 Top Priorities

Twilio has four priorities for reaching profitability and leading in customer engagement, Lawson said. Those are: investing in platform reliability and trust; increasing the profitability of messaging; accelerating segment adoption; and scaling the Flex customer base.

“Today’s layoffs are about aligning our investments more squarely with our priorities, as well as running our company more efficiently overall,” Lawson said. “I take responsibility for choosing to grow our team faster and to pursue many priorities beyond these four priorities over the recent years. And now, I also own the decision to become more focused, resulting in this layoff.”

Twilio has curtailed its investment go-to-market (GTM) areas where customers can succeed without as much human intervention, he said. It’s also making targeted changes to be more efficient in research and development, and general and administrative.

All Twilio employees losing their jobs will get at least 12 weeks of pay, plus one week for every year of service at Twilio. They’ll also receive the full value of Twilio’s next stock vest because the employees are shareholders.

“In the U.S. and in most regions, you will be able to remain on company payroll while searching for your next role, whether it be inside or outside Twilio,” Lawson said. “I know this is especially hard news for those Twilions who depend on Twilio-sponsored visas. We’ll be giving those team members even more support to hopefully minimize the disruption to them and their families as they work through their immigration status.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Edward Gately or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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Edward Gately

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

As news editor, Edward Gately covers cybersecurity, new channel programs and program changes, M&A and other IT channel trends. Prior to Informa, he spent 26 years as a newspaper journalist in Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

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