BEIJING, June 14 (TMTPOST) — Southeast Asian e-commerce giant Shopee will streamline its staff in ShopeeFood, ShopeePay, Shopee Mexico, Shopee Argentina, Shopee Chile and cross-border team supporting the company’s operation in Spain, according to a news report from DealStreetAsia.
The massive layoff, which Shopee described as “optimization”, mainly targets operations in specific markets and market segments.
"Given elevated uncertainty in the broader economy, we believe that it is prudent to make certain difficult but important adjustments to enhance our operational efficiency and focus our resources," an internal memo sent out by Shopee's group president Chris Feng said. “This is to ensure that, as a business, we remain in the best possible position to continue scaling sustainably and, ultimately, to win.”
Established in 2015 and backed by Southeast Asian conglomerate Sea Group, Shopee is heavily influenced by the practices of the Chinese e-commerce industry. The company operates its e-commerce business in a way that is similar to that of the common e-commerce operation in China.
As of 2021, Shopee was widely considered as the largest e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia with 343 million monthly visitors, and the company also serves consumers and sellers throughout in several countries across the Americas and Europe who wish to purchase and sell their goods online.
Sea Group's first-quarter 2022 financials registered a 64.4% year-on-year increase in GAAP revenue at US$2.9 billion. Its gross profits increased by 81.3% to US$1.2 billion over the same period.
Shopee's business, while still losing money, saw its revenues grow by 71.3% year-on-year to US$1.9 billion in Q1 2022. The company’s gross merchandise value rose by 38.7% to US$17.4 billion. However, the company continues to face challenges presented by the macro environment, including rising inflation and interest rates, that may hurt retail and consumption sectors.