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Shopee lays off Southeast Asia staff in food delivery, online payments

·Senior Reporter
·2-min read
Shopee's office building in Kent Ridge, Singapore.
Shopee announced layoffs in an internal memo. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — E-commerce giant Shopee will be slashing headcount in food delivery ShopeeFood and online payment ShopeePay teams in Southeast Asia, according to media reports.

Reports cited an internal memo, circulated on Monday (13 June), in which Shopee's group president Chris Feng said that "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".

The move was to make adjustments to optimise operations in certain segments and markets, Feng added.

“This reallocation of resources to further focus on our priorities will help us grow our business even better. While we need to continue to optimise our efficiency, we are also generally still growing and hiring as needed to support that growth.”

The memo did not state the scale of the layoffs or which Southeast Asian countries will be affected. Yahoo Finance Singapore has reached out to Shopee for comment.

The company will also be halting its early-stage pilot in Spain and retrenching some of its teams in Mexico, Argentina and Chile, according to the memo.

Apart from the cuts, business will continue as usual in Shopee Mexico, Argentina, Chile, as well as for ShopeeFood and ShopeePay in Southeast Asia.

"We are committed to providing the same level of support to our users, partners and merchants in all these markets," said Feng.

Shopee’s withdrawal from Spain marks its third exit from the international market. Shopee pulled out of India in March, weeks after it announced its exit from France. The e-commerce platform was launched in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and the Philippines in 2015.

Shopee is owned by Singapore-based e-commerce and gaming firm Sea Limited, which was founded by businessman Forrest Li. Shopee opened its regional headquarters, a six-storey building, in Singapore on 3 September 2019.

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