Microsoft stated earlier this year that it would lay off 10,000 employees to align its cost structure with its revenue and where we see customer demand. While the majority of the layoffs have occurred in Seattle, Washington, where Microsoft’s operations are located, other countries have been affected, with Kenya being the first in Africa.
Microsoft’s Africa Development Centre (ADC), according to Edward Ochieng, CTO of Sklylab Systems, was also affected by the layoffs, as mentioned in a tweet on Tuesday. Microsoft launched its ADC branch in Kenya and Nigeria in 2019 as a long-term investment, promising $100 million in the first five years. Last year, the Lagos branch added a new building.
By June 2022, Microsoft had hired over 500 developers, the majority of whom were poached by local tech companies. According to several LinkedIn posts from now-former workers, the global conglomerate has laid off some Kenyan developers. Kipkorir Arap Kirui, one of the affected employees, wrote on LinkedIn,
Kipkorir Arap Kirui, one of the affected employees, wrote on LinkedIn that;
“Last Monday looked like just any other Monday, after a productive meeting with my engineering colleagues, I noticed a meeting invite from my manager in my inbox. While it initially didn’t raise any red flags as we had missed our sync the previous week, I began to grow increasingly anxious as the day progressed. Eventually, at 4:30 pm, I was informed that Microsoft had made my role redundant.”
Background Story To Microsoft Employee Layoff
Microsoft Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Satya Nadella earlier stated that the layoffs at Microsoft would last until March, but he did not specify which of the company’s over 200,000 employees would be affected. This week, the entire engineering team of Microsoft-owned Github was laid off in India, amid allegations that employees were forced to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) as a result of the layoffs. He however did not specify how those impacted outside of the United States would be compensated.
This is similar to Elon Musk’s message to Twitter workers before laying them off; however, whether Twitter will compensate its former African employees remains to be seen. At the time of publication, Microsoft ADC had not commented or responded to our messages.
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