Get full access to one story every week, and to summaries of all other stories. Just create a free account

On 10 June, New Delhi-based logistics SaaS startup FarEye laid off 250 employees.

On 7 June, Bengaluru-based gold loan provider Rupeek laid off around 200 people from its workforce, saying that the recent economic downturn “compelled [it] to re-calibrate”.

​​On 30 May, Indian mobile esports platform Mobile Premier League (MPL)—which entered the unicorn club last September at a valuation of US$2.3 billion—laid off around 100 people. It’s also exiting the Indonesian market.

And these are just a handful of examples. Over 9,500 people have been laid off in total this year, as per Inc42’s layoff tracker tracker Inc42 Indian Startup Layoff Tracker Read more . Tech startups in India are letting go of people on the daily. What was once an employee’s market has suddenly become an employer’s market—just months after the Great Resignation wave wave Livemint How the Great Resignation wave is impacting hiring, job shifting Read more that saw many employees leave, because back then, they could.

To understand the ripple effects of this on employees, The Ken caught up with a 25-year-old payments executive who joined an Indian e-commerce startup about six months ago—at the height of the Great Resignation. At first, he sounded confident about his current job situation. “My role is very critical. I’m indispensable,” he said.

After some time, though, his insecurities began to show. After months of working from home, he now shows up at work everyday. He says he fears his role could get diluted, and that there is simply no room for any slack or any error. “Earlier I would be very vocal about anything I spotted, I would push back if the feature they wanted to work on didn’t make sense. But now I just do my job,” he said.

In hindsight, he believes he should have stayed back at CRED, his previous employer. “Kunal [Shah – Founder, CRED] has some experience in dealing with crisis situations like this. Maybe I would have been better off staying there,” he admitted.

Layoffs are almost a rite of passage in startups. In the last five years, The Ken has looked into this a couple of times. In 2017 2017 The Ken The story of 6000+ layoffs Read more , companies that were a year old then—Snapdeal, PropTiger, Housing.com—laid off in the hundreds when funding dried up. Over 6,000 people lost jobs. And again, in late 2019 2019 The Ken Hire to grow, fire to sustain: Indian startups’ layoff loop Read more , when hiring-led growth caught up with the likes of Paytm, Oyo, Zomato, Ola, Rivigo—and over 3,000 startup employees were asked to leave.

AUTHOR

Arundhati Ramanathan

Arundhati is interested in how people use money in the digital age and how new economies will take shape based on that interaction. She writes the newsletter Ka-Ching! every Monday. She lives in Bengaluru and has spent over 12 years reporting and writing on various subjects.

View Full Profile

Read this story. Subscribe Now

This story is available across both editions. Subscribe to the one that’s most relevant for you. Questions?

 

Premium

  • 5 original and reported longform business stories every week
  • Access to ONLY India edition
  • Close to 250 exclusive stories every year
  • Full access to over 6 years of paywalled stories
  • Pick up to 5 premium subscriber newsletters
  • 4 original and reported longform business stories each week
  • Access to ONLY Southeast Asia edition
  • Close to 200 exclusive stories every year
  • Full access to all paywalled stories since March 2020
  • Pick up to 5 premium subscriber newsletters

Rs. 2,750 /year

$ 120 /year

India Edition
Subscribe Subscribe
Most Asked For

Borderless

  • 8 original and reported longform business stories each week
  • Access to both India and Southeast Asia editions
  • Close to 400 exclusive stories every year
  • Full access to over 6 years of paywalled stories across India and Southeast Asia
  • Unlimited access to all premium subscriber newsletters
  • Visual Stories

Rs. 4,200 /year

Subscribe
 

Echelon

  • 8 original and reported longform business stories each week
  • Access to both India and Southeast Asia editions
  • Close to 400 exclusive stories every year
  • Full access to over 6 years of paywalled stories across India and Southeast Asia
  • Unlimited access to all premium subscriber newsletters
  • Visual Stories
  • Bonus annual gift subscription
  • Priority access to all new products and features

Rs. 8,474 /year

Subscribe
Or

Questions?

What kind of subscription plans do you offer?

We have three types of subscriptions
- Premium which gives you access to either the India or the Southeast Asia edition.
- Borderless which gives you complete access to The Ken across both editions
- Echelon which gives you complete access to The Ken across both editions along with a bonus gift subscription

What do I get if I subscribe?

The Premium edition gives you access to stories in that edition along with any five subscriber-only newsletters of your choice.

The Borderless and Echelon subscription gives you complete access to The Ken across editions and unlimited access to as many newsletters as you like.

What topics do you usually write about?

We publish sharp, original and reported stories on technology, business and healthcare. Our stories are forward-looking, analytical and directional — supported by data, visualisations and infographics. We use language and narrative that is accessible to even lay readers. And we optimise for quality over quantity, every single time.

Our specialised subscriber-only newsletters are written by our expert, award-winning journalists and cover a range of topics across finance, retail, clean energy, cryptocurrency, ed-tech and many more.

How many newsletters do you have?

We are constantly adding specialised subscriber-only newsletters all the time. All of these are written by our team of award-winning journalists on a specialised topic.

You can see the list of newsletters that we publish over here.

Does a Premium subscription to your Indian edition get me access to the Southeast Asia edition? Or vice-versa?

Afraid not. Each edition is separate with its own subscription plan. The India edition publishes stories focused on India. The Southeast Asia edition is focused on Southeast Asia. We may occasionally cross-publish stories from one edition to the other.

We recommend the Borderless or the Echelon Plan which will give you access to stories across both editions.

Do you have a mobile app?

Yes! We have a top-rated mobile app on both iOS and Android which allows you to read on-the-go and has some amazing features like the ability to bookmark stories, save on your device, dark mode, and much more. It’s really the best way to read The Ken.

Is there a free trial?

You can sign up for a free account to experience The Ken and understand our products better. We’ll send you some free stories and newsletters occasionally, and you can access our archive of previously published free stories. You can stay on the free account as long as you’d like.

The vast majority of our stories, articles and newsletters can be accessed only by a paid subscription.

Do you offer any discounts?

Sorry, no. Our journalism is funded completely by our subscribers. We believe that quality journalism comes at a price, and readers trust and pay us so that we can remain independent.

Do you offer refunds?

No. We allow you to sample our journalism for free before signing up, and after you do, we stand by its quality. But we do not offer refunds.

I am facing some trouble purchasing a subscription. What can I do?

Just write to us at [email protected] with details. We’ll help you out.

I have a few more questions. How can I reach out to you?

Sure. Just email us at [email protected] or follow us on Twitter.