Waterloo Region EdTech startup ApplyBoard announced that it has laid off six percent of its approximately 1,500 employees globally.
First reported by The Record late Monday night, the news comes just months after CEO Martin Basiri said the company was in a “very good” position to navigate present market conditions during an interview with BetaKit at Collision. In the same interview, Basiri mentioned the market conditions as a good opportunity to be more cash-efficient. “Whoever doesn’t take this opportunity to lean up a little bit [is a] fool,” he said.
ApplyBoard says it is “well capitalized with years of runway.”
ApplyBoard told BetaKit the layoffs were not made for financial reasons, but to serve its customers better, according to a company spokesperson. All layoffs happened in the customer experience team “based on process efficiencies identified as a result of thorough planning,” the spokesperson said.
With a headcount near 1,500, the layoffs impact approximately 90 employees (ApplyBoard declined to share the exact amount of employees affected). The number of Canadian employees included in the six percent is unknown, but multiple Canadian-based former employees could be found posting to LinkedIn about the layoffs over the past 24 hours.
“We believe we are making the best decision for the future of our mission,” said ApplyBoard in a statement. “ApplyBoard remains well capitalized with years of runway. We are focused on growth and the success of students,” the statement reads.
The layoffs come little more than a year after ApplyBoard’s $375 million CAD Series D, which it planned to use to bolster international expansion.
“We are at the right time and [the] right place because of how well the world is opening up,” Martin said at the time. In February of this year, despite the ongoing market downturn, ApplyBoard’s CEO told BetaKit that he had his eyes on the public markets.
“I don’t have exactly the timing,” said Basiri. “But we are getting ready; we have all our things that we are trying to sort out.”
ApplyBoard was founded by Meti, Martin, and Massi Basiri, brothers from Iran who created the company to help international students apply to schools from abroad. Over 400,000 students have been assisted by ApplyBoard’s services to date.
With files from Josh Scott.