Fair, a car startup that lets people own cars flexibly, has been paying attention to the fate of venture-backed startups like Uber and WeWork, who have been struggling to find profitability despite large valuations, and cutting back on staff in an effort to avoid a similar fate.
The company, which is valued at $1.2 billion, and backed by companies like SoftBank, is going to get rid of 40 percent of its staff, reports said. It will also be letting go of CFO Tyler Painter, who is the brother of CEO Scott Painter. His interim replacement will be Kirk Shryoc.
“As Fair has grown, the skill sets needed to drive the business forward change,” the company said in a statement. “Kirk has a decade of experience running treasury and capital markets for large fleet companies, and is well known on the capital markets side. We’ve been working with him over the course of this year, and given our renewed focus on our acquisition and financing approach, now was the right time to ask him to step in to manage our upstream banking relationships and the fleet management.”
It’s not known exactly how many people will be laid off, but TechCrunch looked at the company’s employee number on LinkedIn and said it could possibly work out to 215 people out of 539.
CEO Painter said the company won’t be closing any specific operations, even while it struggles to find its footing in certain areas.
“It’s hard building a sustainable company, and these are the choices you have to make,” he said.
He maintained that the decision to downsize was an effort to get ahead of finding profitability, as opposed to the growth support model that has carried companies like Lyft and Uber. He said it wasn’t a decision from any of the company’s backers.