Tech start-up Bolt is laying off about 300 people after moving to a four-day workweek

Just a few months ago, tech start-up Bolt was the place to be, with the benefit of a four-day work week. This week he fired a third of his staff.

Hundreds of workers at an American tech start-up, which made headlines earlier this year for a permanent move to a four-day workweek, found they were fired from a calendar meeting invitation.

Bolt, which builds payment software for online retailers, was valued at $ 11 billion ($ 15.4 billion) in January.

This week in a message to the staff – and later posted on Bolt’s website – Chief Executive Maju Kuruvilla said the company is “making several structural changes” due to “macro challenges”, which included staff cuts.

“For those directly interested in the US and Canada, our goal is to notify you within the next 30 minutes when you will receive an invitation from the calendar for an individual or small sub-team ‘Bolt Remodeling’ meeting,” Kuruvilla wrote. who was previously the vice president of Amazon.

“For those of you who will remain on the Bolt team, later this morning you will receive an invitation to a town hall at 1pm PST.

“If you work outside of the United States and Canada, we will provide further clarity based on local laws and regulations in the coming weeks.”

This was confirmed by a spokesman for Bolt SFGATE that “about a third of the company” has been laid off. It had around 900 employees, according to its LinkedIn.

Mr. Kuruvilla posted on Twitter a list of nearly 50 employees who had been laid off, encouraging recruiting companies to contact them.

“Some very talented people are leaving Bolt and other companies would be lucky to have them,” he wrote.

A New York Times an investigation earlier this month said the company and founder Ryan Breslow had “inflated metrics and overestimated Bolt’s technology capabilities in pursuit of ever higher valuations.”

Mr. Breslow described the complaint as a “hit piece”.

The 27-year-old abruptly stepped down as CEO in January, weeks after Bolt was valued at $ 11 billion ($ 15.4 billion).

Mr. Breslow, who left Stanford in 2014 to start Bolt, is now executive chairman. His net worth is $ 2 billion ($ A2.8 billion), according to forbes.

In April, it emerged that Authentic Brands Group, which owns Forever 21 and Reebok, is suing Bolt for failing to deliver on the promised technology.

ABG said that while integrating Bolt with Forever 21, it lost over $ 150 million ($ 210 million) in online sales. Bloomberg reported. Bolt denied the claims.

Originally published as Tech start-up Bolt is laying off about 300 people after moving to a four-day workweek