Salesforce cut hundreds of employees Monday

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Salesforce on Tuesday confirmed that it cut some employees this week after the enterprise software maker saw demand lighten in some countries and industries.

Protocol reported earlier on the cuts, saying they could affect up to 2,500 employees. One person familiar with the matter said Salesforce let go of fewer than 1,000 people Monday. At the end of January it employed 73,541 people. In August Salesforce said in a filing that headcount rose 36% in the past year “to meet the higher demand for services from our customers.”

Marc Benioff, co-chief executive officer of Salesforce.com Inc., speaks during a keynote at the 2022 Dreamforce conference in San Francisco on Sept. 20, 2022. Tens of thousands of techies will frolic through kitschy national park-themed decorations in San Francisco’s downtown this week as Salesforce Inc.’s annual Dreamforce conference returns in full after two pandemic years.
Marlena Sloss | Bloomberg | Getty Images

“Our sales performance process drives accountability. Unfortunately, that can lead to some leaving the business, and we support them through their transition,” a Salesforce spokesperson told CNBC in a statement.

Several technology companies, Salesforce included, have announced plans to add employees at a slower rate than before this year to weather rougher business conditions as prices and interest rates move higher. Some of them have also gone a step beyond that and removed some existing employees, as experts debate the timing of a possible economic recession.

In August Salesforce issued full-year earnings and revenue guidance that came in below expectations, sending the stock down 3% the next day. Amy Weaver, Salesforce’s finance chief, told analysts that demand slowed down among small and medium-sized businesses, particularly in North America and Europe, and in communications, consumer goods, media and retail. Marc Benioff, Salesforce’s co-founder and co-CEO, said he expects longer sales cycles and greater scrutiny of corporate purchases to persist.

One of Salesforce’s top competitors in business software, Microsoft, announced a round of job cuts in October.

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