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SoftBank-backed Ola to cut 200 jobs in India • Technology Flow

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SoftBank-backed Ola plans to cut around 200 jobs in its engineering teams in the next few days, on track to shrink its workforce by over 1,200 this year, as the ride-hailing giant streamlines its operations to improve financials.

The company has kicked off a new wave of layoffs affecting engineering teams in its food and ride-hailing businesses. An Ola spokesperson said the layoffs will affect less than 200 jobs, accounting for 10% of the company’s engineering team.

The Bangalore-headquartered startup, valued at over $7 billion and backed by Temasek and Warburg Pincus, has experimented with several businesses in recent years, including food delivery and quick commerce, but is technically focused on Ola Electric. An independent startup that produces electric scooters.

Ola said in a statement that it currently employs around 2,000 people and aims to increase the engineering talent pool to 5,000 people in the next 18 months.

“In light of these efforts, the company is focusing operations and undertaking a restructuring exercise to reduce redundancies and build a strong lateral structure that strengthens related roles and functions,” a spokesperson for the startup said in a statement.

The startup, whose founder hasn’t talked about a marquee ride-hailing service in a year and whose firm bought its sibling fintech startup Avail Finance in March, is also struggling to grow sales of its electric vehicles, according to government data.

Monday’s layoff adds to a growing list of job cuts across the Indian startup ecosystem this year, with 10,000 roles cut this year partly due to the market downturn.

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