Amazon laying off hundreds of Prime Video staff

Amazon.com Inc. is laying off hundreds of employees in its Prime Video and studios business.

Mike Hopkins, who runs the streaming video and studios division, which includes the MGM unit the company acquired last year, announced the cuts in an email to employees on Wednesday.

“Throughout the past year, we’ve looked at nearly every aspect of our business with an eye towards improving our ability to deliver even more breakthrough movies, TV shows, and live sports in a personalized, easy to use entertainment experience for our global customers,” Hopkins wrote in the memo, which was reviewed by Bloomberg.

“As a result, we’ve identified opportunities to reduce or discontinue investments in certain areas while increasing our investment and focus on content and product initiatives that deliver the most impact.”

Amazon held rolling layoffs in late 2022 and early 2023 that ultimately totalled more than 27,000 employees, as chief executive officer Andy Jassy looked to cut costs after expanding rapidly during the pandemic.

He has also axed multiple projects concocted during the Jeff Bezos era.

Since then, Amazon has fired hundreds of people in the division responsible for its voice-activated Alexa assistant as well as in the music unit.

Bloomberg also reported on Tuesday that the Twitch livestreaming service was preparing to announce cuts to about 35% of its staff, or about 500 workers.

Those layoffs come amid concerns over losses at Twitch and after several top executives left the company in the span of a few months.

Amazon isn’t the only company looking to cut costs in its video streaming business. Walt Disney Co., Paramount Global and Warner Bros. Discovery Inc. are all retrenching.

Netflix Inc. hasn’t boosted its content budget in two years.

The number of scripted shows released in the US peaked at 599 in 2022. Industry experts predict only 400 will be made this year.

Hopkins said the company would inform workers in the Americas who are set to be laid off Wednesday morning Seattle time, and in most other regions by the end of the week.

The Information reported on the Prime Video cuts earlier.

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Amazon laying off hundreds of Prime Video staff