Didi Freight May Cut Up to 50% of Employees

LatePost reported in February that Chinese mobile transportation firm Didi had made the decision to lay off 20% of its employees. On Monday, Jiemian News reported claims by an employee that from November last year to the end of this month, the overall layoff ratio for employees of Didi Freight far exceeded 20%, and may will reach as high as 50%.

“The expansion plan, which was originally scheduled to be implemented in July last year, was completely stopped. Didi Freight’s business may shrink to only one or two cities to maintain operations,” the source said.

Didi Freight was first launched in the Chinese cities of Hangzhou and Chengdu in June 2020. The layoffs of Didi Freight can be traced back to November 2021, when the outsourcing teams in various cities were cut. By December, its own teams began to be involved, and up to a couple people in each city were laid off.

From the end of December last year to the beginning of January this year, due to the stagnation of Didi’s group buying arm Chengxin Youxuan, hundreds of employees of the first division of Didi Freight were laid off, except for a few product R&D personnel.

In middle and late February of this year, the second division of Didi Freight began to lay off employees from the preparatory teams that have not yet joined in business expansion, and then teams that have maintained operations in cities across the country.

According to a prospectus submitted by Didi in June last year, in the first quarter of 2021, the revenues of its travel business in China, international business and other businesses were 39.2 billion yuan ($6.16 billion), 804 million yuan and 2.1 billion yuan respectively. Revenues of travel business in China accounted for 93% of total revenue. The other businesses included community group buying, freight transportation, bike-sharing, autonomous driving and financial services.

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For this layoff, the internal consensus within Didi is that the company plans to leave its resources to online ride-hailing and the future growth engine: vehicle manufacturing and autonomous driving.