As the coronavirus pandemic continues, Groupon plans to lay off or furlough around 2,800 employees, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday (April 13), the Chicago Tribune reported.
The cuts are partly an attempt to keep up with the current economic strife that has left large portions of the country jobless.
Chicago-based Groupon, which sells consumers coupons and deals to various retailers and businesses, has not seen its best days due to the stay-at-home orders issued by most of the country’s government entities.
The cutbacks represent roughly 44 percent of the company’s entire workforce, including a sizable amount of its sales team, and should be finished by June, the company said. Groupon has already been spending the past few years re-evaluating how to reach customers and give them the best experience possible.
Groupon said the negative turn in its funding would likely not subside until the nation’s governments began to signal that it was OK for people to begin going out again.
Groupon has also put a hiring freeze into effect and backtracked on an earlier choice not to sell products through its Groupon Goods marketplace. The board of directors has instituted a “poison pill” plan intended to protect the company from any investors trying to buy it out during this time, aiming to protect the interests of shareholders.
Under that plan, if one group acquires 10 percent or more of Groupon’s outstanding common stock, the existing shareholders can buy up discounted shares that will dilute the shares of the acquiring company.
As for customer outreach, Groupon will be trying to adapt to social distancing, pushing products that are able to be used from home, like wine delivery or virtual workout packages.
Groupon’s recent exploits have been focused on a shift toward experiences, such as painting classes or special dinners, rather than merchandise.