Mozilla to cut 250 staff worldwide, including in A/NZ

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Mozilla to cut 250 staff worldwide, including in A/NZ

Unveils large-scale restructure.

Mozilla is set to cut around a quarter of its global paid workforce - around 250 roles - in a sweeping restructure, with its Australia and New Zealand operations impacted.

The maker of the Firefox browser, as well as the Pocket app and developer tools, said it would close its operations in Taipei.

It will also redeploy around 60 people worldwide into other teams, in addition to the 250 roles cut.

“Our pre-COVID plan is no longer workable,” Mozilla CEO Mitchell Baker said in an all-staff email. [pdf]

“We have talked about the need for change - including the likelihood of layoffs. Today these changes become real.”

Mitchell said Individuals whose roles are impacted in Canada and the United States “will be notified today.” 

“For our colleagues in Europe, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand, the process will reflect local legal requirements,” she said.

Per local laws, “definitively impacted” staff will receive details of their severance package.

“If your role has been identified as potentially impacted subject to a consultation process, you will receive an invitation to begin the consultation process today and we will continue to work through those locally before any decisions are finalised,” Mitchell wrote.

Mitchell said 2020 had already been designated as “a year of change” for Mozilla, but that this had not turned out as planned.

“Our pre-COVID plan for 2020 included a great deal of change already: building a better internet by creating new kinds of value in Firefox; investing in innovation and creating new products; and adjusting our finances to ensure stability over the long term,” she said.

“Economic conditions resulting from the global pandemic have significantly impacted our revenue.”

She laid out a five-point strategic plan for the organisation’s future.

This included adopting “new focuses” on product, technology, community, mindset - and economics.

On mindset, Mitchell said Mozilla needed to balance advocacy with product and technology aims.

Meanwhile, on economics, she said the organisation needed to recognise “that the old model where everything was free has consequences”.

“How can we lead towards business models that honour and protect people while creating opportunities for our business to thrive?” she wrote.

“How can we, or others who want a better internet, or those who feel like a different balance should exist between social and public benefit and private profit offer an alternative? 

“We need to identify those people and join them. We must learn and expand different ways to support ourselves and build a business that isn’t what we see today.”

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