2 months after going public, SWVL lays off 32% of its workforce
Egypt born but Dubai based mobility startup SWVL has announced plans to reduce its workforce by 32 percent. The company said the process is part of a portfolio optimization program that will enhance efficiency and reduce central costs to accelerate its path to profitability to turn cash flow positive in 2023.
Swvl’s Transport as a Service (TaaS) business provides technology-enabled transportation for corporates, schools, universities, industrial facilities, airlines and other institutional clients via its asset-light marketplace while with the Software as a Service (SaaS) business, Swvl licenses its proprietary technology to transit agencies, bus operators and other high-capacity vehicles fleet owners and users. These two business spheres are both growing rapidly and have now collectively crossed more than 500 live accounts across 4 continents with more than $5m monthly revenues.
The Company’s portfolio optimization program will include the following: Continuation and organic and inorganic growth of TaaS and SaaS business across all geographies of operations including Germany, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, Japan, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Egypt, Kenya, and Pakistan; Focus on the Business to Consumer (B2C) business in Egypt and Pakistan, currently the Company’s highest B2C revenue contribution and profitability markets; Optimizing B2C route networks in certain cities as well as headcount and operating expenses; Continued investment in developing the Company’s proprietary technology stack.
The recently closed acquisitions of TaaS and SaaS businesses Viapool, Volt Lines and Shotl and the pending acquisition of door2door contribute to this growth.
The Company expects to reduce its headcount by approximately 32%. Such reductions will focus on roles automated by investments in the Company’s engineering and product and support functions.
This layoff by the Dubai based company follow a list of global cross-stage downsizing witnessed across many markets. Over 15,000 tech workers have lost their jobs in the U.S. alone according to reports. Companies such as Klarna, Getir, Gorillas and Bolt (the payments company) have dismissed portions of their workforce while the likes of Snap, Twitter and Instacart have slowed down hiring entirely.
Swvl plans to provide monetary, non-monetary, and job placement support to help transition certain of its employees to new roles. As a result of the portfolio optimization program, Swvl’s management currently expects that the company will be cash-flow positive in 2023.