Instant messaging app Rakuten Viber, which has 250 million users worldwide, has laid off 45 employees, accounting for 8% of the workforce. Around 20 of those released are based in Israel. The company employs 550 people worldwide and is making significant cuts for the first time since it was founded 12 years ago.
“Viber is realigning the business to invest and focus on developing its fintech and utility products and services. Following the launch of Viber’s payment capabilities in July 2022, the company’s business strategy is evolving in tandem with its ongoing product innovation,” the company said in a statement.
“Viber has made the difficult but significant decision to reduce its global workforce by 8% to reflect the shift in focus and changing market conditions. The strategic focus puts Viber on an exciting path to become more than just a messaging app as a real resource offering a wide range of services to its users. Viber thanks each team member who played a valuable role in getting Viber to where it is today. Our leadership team is working to ensure affected employees have the support they need to make their transition as smooth as possible.”
Viber has 250 million monthly users mostly from Greece, Hungary, Bulgaria, Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.