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Vogo

Exclusive: Vogo slashes 15% of its workforce across hardware and product teams

Vogo

Hiring and firing is part of a startup’s journey. Most consumer tech companies hire aggressively once capital hits their bank account but also lay off at the same pace when preserving capital becomes top priority. 

Almost a month after closing Series C round, scooter rental company Vogo has slashed 15% of its total workforce. The Ola-backed company has laid off 50-55 employees in the past three weeks, according to two Entrackr sources.  

“About 30 people in the hardware and IoT verticals were laid off while remaining 20-25 employees from the design, marketing, and product teams were asked to leave,” said one of the above sources, requesting anonymity.

With this, Vogo joins Paytm, Ola, Oyo, Zomato and Coverfox — all companies that have been trimming their workforce over the last several months in an attempt to cut costs and focus on profitability.

Vogo confirmed the development to Entrackr but added that around 40 employees were impacted due to their restructuring move.

“Over the last two quarters, we have been able to introduce various industry-first innovations including bluetooth-based keyless vehicles, vehicle quality based personalized recommendations, and RFID based helmet detection prototypes,” said a Vogo spokesperson in a response to Entrackr queries. “Several such automation has led to an organizational restructure affecting about 40 employees.” 

Vogo allows users to rent a two-wheeler from specifically designated pick up points. It directly competes with -backed Bounce, which essentially provides the same service except that in the case of a Bounce vehicle, users can pick up and drop the bike anywhere in the city. 

In January, the Bengaluru-based company had raised $35 million in a Series C round led by Aspada and existing investors – Matrix Partners, Kalaari Capital, and Stellaris Venture Partners. 

With the fresh layoff at Vogo, the company has joined the batch of Ola, OYO, Zomato and Paytm who have laid off more than 5,000 employees collectively. 

While the company’s spokesperson further mentioned that Vogo continues to grow and hire quality talent across various functions especially in engineering and product roles, several experts see it as an exercise to weed out redundancy and control burn rate.

“Almost every well-funded startups in India is focusing on profitability. Even the likes of Paytm, Ola and Bounce have been prioritizing sane and sustainable growth. The layoff at Vogo seems to be executed with the same intention,” said the above-quoted person.

Update: Vogo has reached out to clarify that only three employees were laid off in non-hardware verticals.

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Exclusive: Vogo slashes 15% of its workforce across hardware and product teams

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