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Hundreds of London tech employees face the sack as Salesforce slashes jobs

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff  (AP)
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff (AP)

Hundreds of London tech jobs could be at risk after software business Salesforce said it would be making a wave of redundancies as part of efforts to cut costs.

The firm warned it would be firing around 10% of staff and closing a number of offices amid a restructuring, as chief executive Marc Benioff told employees the company had hired ‘too many people’.

In a letter to staff he wrote: “The environment remains challenging and our customers are taking a more measured approach to their purchasing decisions. With this in mind, we’ve made the very difficult decision to reduce our workforce by about 10 percent, mostly over the coming weeks.

“I’ve been thinking a lot about how we came to this moment. As our revenue accelerated through the pandemic, we hired too many people leading into this economic downturn we’re now facing, and I take responsibility for that.”

Benioff, who has a net worth of $6 billion according to Bloomberg, told employees they should offer staff facing the sack “the compassion and love they and their families deserve and need now more than ever,” adding that workers would be personally notified of their redundancy within an hour of receipt of his message.

Salesforce employs over 2,500 people in the UK, according to its most recent filing with Companies House, meaning more than 250 jobs are set to go if job cuts total 10% of the UK workforce.

The lion’s share of UK employees work at the landmark 46-storey skyscraper Salesforce Tower in Bishopsgate. Formerly known as Heron Tower, the building is the second-tallest in the City of London and houses the 24-hour Duck and Waffle restaurant on its top floor.

A Salesforce spokesperson did not confirm how many redundancies would be taking place in the UK. Benioff said staff in the US would receive a minimum of “nearly five months of pay”, with workers outside the US set to receive a similar level of support.

Shares in Salesforce climbed 4% in Wall Street trading following the announcement.