Hong Kong-headquartered booking platform Klook has reduced its global headcount and furloughed a portion of its workforce as part of its latest cost-optimisation measures for weathering the Covid-19 storm.
The layoffs and furloughs will impact 10 to 20 per cent of the organisation’s headcount across most of its functions.
Ethan Lin, CEO and co-founder of Klook, revealed to TTG Asia that all of the company’s co-founders, including Bernie Xiong and Eric Gnock Fah, will forego their pay “until the end of the crisis”.
Its leadership team has also taken voluntary pay cuts, said Lin, and the company will implement a temporarily reduced work week. Furloughed employees will continue to receive healthcare coverage and applicable benefits, including access to Klook’s Employee Assistance Program.
Lin expressed: “The world is concerned about the devastating impact of Covid-19 and there is no travel at the moment, rightfully so.”
He lamented that these “painful decisions” had to be made to ensure that Klook can weather this storm, protect the long-term success of the organisation, as well as lead the recovery of the industry when the time comes.
Founded in 2014, Klook’s rapid and exponential growth elevated it into one of Asia’s symbols of start-up success. The company recently began expanding into Europe and North America, and as of September 2019, had more than 1,000 staff across more than 20 offices worldwide.
Pre-pandemic, it had raised a total of US$520 million in funding from investors including Sequoia China, TCV, Matrix Partners and Goldman Sachs.