In a bid to cut costs and focus on profitability, LEAD, an edtech platform, has laid off a significant number of members from its workforce. Although the exact number of people affected is yet to be officially revealed, media reports say that at least 80 have been let go across sales, marketing, academics and operations.
LEAD is not the only edtech unicorn to have resorted to layoffs. Amidst what is being referred to as a ‘funding winter’, many other edtech companies, including Byju’s, Vedantu and Unacademy have downsized. The Indian start-up ecosystem’s funding has reportedly dropped by 40 per cent, primarily due to a global slump and a fall in the value of tech stocks, coupled with inflation and unstable political conditions across the world.
While Business Line reports that about 23 people from the academics team have been let go, the Company maintains that last month they had a performance appraisal process and the company sees some churn during this time of the year. “The resulting reduction in our workforce is less than 100 persons and is majorly due to performance-related reasons. LEAD’s current employee strength is around 2200 persons; and we would like to assure all our stakeholders that we are adequately staffed for our growth aspirations. With schools across India now open again, the School Edtech segment is poised for growth, and LEAD is bringing innovation and transformation back to these institutions,” the company said in a statement to HRKatha.
Founded by Sumeet Yashpal Mehta and Smita Deorah in 2012, the edtech platform posted operating revenues of about Rs 57 crore in FY21. It incurred losses to the tune of Rs 126 crore in FY21.
Various reports say that about 11,000 jobs have been cut in the Indian start-up ecosystem in 2022. While Byju’s laid off about 2,500 employees, Unacademy let go over 600 and Vedantu over 700 over a couple of rounds.