Meta to cut roughly 350 jobs in Ireland, Government told

Social media company is laying off 11,000 employees from global workforce

Facebook parent Meta has told the Government that it expects to cut roughly 350 jobs in Ireland, part of a global cost-trimming initiative aimed at reducing the social media giant’s 87,000-strong international workforce by 11,000 or 13 per cent.

Sources with knowledge of recent communications between Meta and the Department of Employment have indicated that the company expects about 350 people to be made redundant in Ireland. It is understood that this figure is subject to revision throughout the consultation process, which the company will now enter into with affected staff.

If the cuts in Ireland were to be in line with the 13 per cent target then about 390 Irish jobs would have been lost, although Meta has declined to give specific figures.

Before the lay-offs were announced, sources had suggested the final figure could be as high as 1,000 but that is now considered unlikely.


In a statement on Wednesday, Meta said the 6,000 or so contractors it employs in Ireland through third-party companies will not be affected. Generally, if contractors are to be laid off, that would be done by the third-party firms that legally employ them. The company uses large numbers of contractors specifically to allow it to increase and reduce staff quickly as it requires.

A Meta spokeswoman said the number of Irish redundancies will be “based on the reduction of 13 per cent of the global team, although we won’t be in a position to confirm the final number of redundancies until the collective consultation process is completed”.

The company said it has informed the relevant policy stakeholders of its plans, including the Department of the Taoiseach and Department of Enterprise Employment.

However, she said the Department of Enterprise has been notified of the expected number of Irish job cuts. Sources have indicated that the figure given to the department was roughly 350.

Meta said the timeline for the cuts will be “defined by Irish Government guidelines”, which will mean affected employees entering collective consultation with the company.

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The spokeswoman said that Ireland remains “an integral part of our company and our operations”.

She said: “Today’s announcement and the process does not have any impact on Ireland’s status, or on our long-term investment plans in Ireland. We appreciate Ireland’s and in particular the Irish Government’s ongoing support for our operations here.”

In a message to employees this morning, Meta’s founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg confirmed the redundancies as part of a broader global cost-cutting initiative, which will include the ongoing consolidation of Meta’s property interests.

“Today I’m sharing some of the most difficult changes we’ve made in Meta’s history. I’ve decided to reduce the size of our team by about 13 per cent and let more than 11,000 of our talented employees go,” he said.

“We are also taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1.”

Meta employs more than 3,000 people directly in Ireland, with an additional 6,000 people employed at operations across multiple sites including Meta’s international headquarters in Dublin, Clonee data centre in Co Meath and Reality Labs in Cork.

Mr Zuckerberg said he held himself accountable for the decision and “how we got here”.

He told staff: “At the start of Covid, the world rapidly moved online and the surge of ecommerce led to outsized revenue growth. Many people predicted this would be a permanent acceleration that would continue even after the pandemic ended. I did too, so I made the decision to significantly increase our investments. Unfortunately, this did not play out the way I expected.

“Not only has online commerce returned to prior trends, but the macroeconomic downturn, increased competition, and ads signal loss have caused our revenue to be much lower than I’d expected. I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that.”

It follows Twitter’s decision last Friday to cull its 7,500 from its workforce globally, with more than half of its 500 workers in Dublin expected to be axed.

Dual Irish-US headquartered payments company Stripe, founded by Patrick and John Collison, also revealed plans last week to cut 14 per cent of its staff worldwide as the global downturn continues to hit the tech sector. Some 80 Irish jobs are expected to be lost in the process.

Software company Zendesk will also cut 300 jobs globally with a number of roles at its Dublin office expected to be in the firing line. Precise figures for the Irish business have not yet been made available.

Ian Curran

Ian Curran

Ian Curran is a Business reporter with The Irish Times