Didi Chuxing, China’s largest ride-hailing firm, will cut headcounts as many as 2,000 people, taking up 15% of its workforce, sources familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.
The layoff was announced by CEO and co-founder Cheng Wei on an internal meeting last Friday, saying that some non-core businesses units would be re-evaluated and cut back if necessary. The meeting revealed also Didi’s plan to hire 2,500 more staffs in 2019 to focus on international expansion, safety and product engineering. Though the headcounts should remain roughly the same of 13,000 people till the end of 2019, the round of layoff stands out with its sheer scale.
Didi has suffered a backlash from national-level investigation and public scrutiny after the two safety incidents last year, in which two passengers were murdered while using Didi service. In the first six months of 2018 alone, the Chinese ride-hailing giant is said to have lost CNY 4 billion (USD 590 million). In December last year, annual bonuses for Didi employees were cut half due to the company’s poor performance.