Mozilla lays off 250 employees to restructure its business but is reportedly still financially secure
The Mozilla Corporation recently announced that it was laying off approximately 250 employees in an attempt to secure the organization’s financial future. The layoffs were announced by the CEO of Mozilla Corporation and Mozilla Foundation Chairwoman, Mitchell Baker, in a public blog post, which also highlighted the company’s plans for the foreseeable future.
In the blog post, Baker wrote, “Today we announced a significant restructuring of Mozilla Corporation. This will strengthen our ability to build and invest in products and services that will give people alternatives to conventional Big Tech. Sadly, the changes also include a significant reduction in our workforce by approximately 250 people.”
Baker further revealed that the layoffs and restructuring were a part of the organization’s need to adapt its finances in a post-COVID-19 world and focus on commercially viable products that would help the organization generate revenue in the long term. This led some to speculate that Mozilla was facing financial troubles and had failed to renew its search deal with Google, which has historically accounted for 75-95% of the organization’s annual budget.
However, sources familiar with the matter have confirmed to ZDNet that Mozilla is financially sound and the layoffs were just a result of over-staffing in areas that the organization was not planning on prioritizing going forward. The sources also revealed that Mozilla and Google are expected to extend their current search deal for another three years at an estimated price tag of $400 million-$450 million per year. Details about the extended search deal will, most likely, be revealed later this year in November, when the organization is scheduled to disclose its 2019 financial figures.
In a statement to ZDNet, a Mozilla spokesperson said, “Mozilla’s search partnership with Google is ongoing, with Google as the default search provider in the Firefox browser in many places around the world. We’ve recently extended the partnership, and the relationship isn’t changing.”
Going forward, the Mozilla Corporation will prioritize commercialization efforts in the short-term, while work on open standards and protocols will take a back seat. However, Mozilla doesn’t plan to phase out its work in the web development community and will, most likely, pick up where it left off after its subscription-based services ensure long-term business survivability.