eToro lays off 100 in wake of failed SPAC IPO
Following the cancellation of its plans to go public via a merger with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) FinTech Acquisition Corp V (NASDAQ:FTCV), social trading focused online broker eToro is going to look to cut costs, including laying off a sizeable portion of its workforce.
eToro announced late Tuesday that it plans to lay off about 100 workers, with about half the layoffs coming in its Israel headquarters and the other half in offices abroad. That represents about 6% of eToro’s workforce of about 1,700 employees.
eToro had been pursuing a fairly aggressive growth at (almost) all costs strategy, as it was looking to go public in a market which valued revenue and client growth, over profitability, following in the footsteps of Robinhood which IPO’d at a $32 billion valuation less than a year ago, while still losing money. The company more than doubled its marketing spend between 2020 and 2021, growing it from $229 million (in 2020) to $524 million in 2021. Personnel related expenses ballooned from $37 million in 2020 to $238.6 million in 2021.
However with a going-public event now off the table, eToro appears to be pivoting to take a more “balanced” approach between growth and profitability. Also, the SPAC merger deal included several hundred million dollars of fresh investment funds from a number of private/public market investors – and those funds won’t be coming into eToro’s coffers now, with the deal called off.
An eToro spokesperson said:
“Due to the current market conditions and after a period of rapid growth, we have decided to take a more balanced approach in the current period between growth and profitability. Accordingly, we have taken the decision to reduce our workforce by 6% in order to ensure long-term sustainable growth. We will provide assistance to those employees who are forced to leave in order to support them in their next career steps.
“Over the past 15 years, we have successfully coped with many market situations and come out of them stronger and more experienced. We are confident in our long-term growth strategy and in the future of eToro. The company continues to operate through its business strength and high financing. Due to our global deployment, and the range of services and products that we offer, and our social network, we are well placed to continue to grow.”