Some unfortunate news to report from GoDaddy this morning. GoDaddy CEO Aman Bhutani had the difficult job of announcing a round of layoffs at the company, the direct result of the impact the COVID-19 coronavirus has had on the company. The news comes less than three months after the company “pledged not to lay off employees for at least 90 days,” according to a Phoenix Business Journal article from April.
From what I understand from Aman’s letter to employees (and the public), there are 814 GoDaddy employees whose jobs have been eliminated, but more than 40% of those employees were offered different roles with the company. It appears the layoffs impact the company’s outbound sales teams in Arizona and Iowa. The company blamed the COVID-19 pandemic along with “regulatory developments” related to how the company can contact its customers.
In addition to the layoffs, GoDaddy announced it will be closing its Austin, Texas offices. Other restructuring related to its sales staff was also announced.
At this time, I do not know if anyone directly involved in the domain investment space have been impacted. It does not seem like the domain investor-facing Premier Services team would be impacted by the restructuring that was announced, but I reached out to a GoDaddy representative to ask for further details.
GoDaddy’s stock performance through the past few months has been pretty solid. The company’s stock was trading in the high $70s in February, dropped to the low $40s in March, and recently nearly hit its all time high of $83 first achieved in February of 2018.
Hopefully the impacted employees will be out of work for a short time. From what I have seen over the years, GoDaddy hires well and has an excellent training program for its employees. I wish for the best for those who are impacted by today’s news.
Update: A representative from GoDaddy told me “No domain investor facing employees were impacted.”