Staff layoffs at Bizzabo and Verbit as reality bites

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Event tech platform Bizzabo laid off 120 people this week – 30 per cent of its 400 employees – in response to what it called the ‘swift economic downturn’.

In a note to staff, published on its website, co-founders Eran Ben-Shushan, Alon Alroy, and Boaz Katz, said it was a difficult decision, but ‘ultimately the right one’.

 US and Israel-based Bizzabo has made several acquisitions in the last two years and increased its headcount, as event planners shifted from in-person to virtual.

The company raised $138 million from investors in December 2020, when it looked like the pandemic would leave a permanent mark on the events industry. 

“Like so many companies, we’ve had to adjust our strategy to prioritize financial efficiency to continue delivering on our mission to unleash the power of professional events to create impactful and rewarding experiences,” the founders said.

Meanwhile Israeli unicorn Verbit, the AI and transcription service, has laid off 60 members of staff – 10 per cent of the total – following a period of rapid growth, according to CTech.

Verbit closed a $250m Series E at a $2bn valuation in November of last year. In 18 months, the company acquired six companies, increasing its workforce fivefold.

In a letter to staff, Verbit CEO and founder Tom Livne said: “…we need to navigate the company and ensure that we are in the best position to lead it to prosperity and continued success, while we balance between growth and profitability.”

Earlier this year, UK-based event platform Hopin cut 12 per cent of its staff – about 138 people - after purchasing streaming service StreamYard to ‘solve overlaps and duplications’. The company purchased five companies in 2021 alone.

   

James Lancaster
Written By
James Lancaster

AMI editor James Lancaster is a familiar face in the meetings industry and international association community. Since joining AMI in 2010, he has gained a reputation for asking difficult questions and getting lost in convention centres. Proofer, podcaster, and panellist - in his spare time, James likes to walk, read, listen to music, and drink beer.

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