Employment Law

Amazon cuts 180 jobs in gaming division, part of broader restructuring

A photo of a person using a keyboard and computer mouse. (Photo: ELLA DON / Unsplash)

For the second time this year, Amazon is reducing the size of its gaming division.

According to news outlets, including Reuters, the e-commerce giant has eliminated approximately 180 jobs as part of a broader restructuring.

“After our initial restructuring in April, it became clear that we needed to focus our resources even more on the areas that are growing with the highest potential to drive our business forward,” Christoph Hartmann, vice president of Amazon Games, said in an email that was viewed by Reuters.

In April, the company laid off around 100 employees in its gaming division. It remains unclear if any Canadian workers are affected by the latest round of cuts.

As part of the restructuring, CNBC reports that Amazon is also shutting down parts of the business that focus on streaming and supporting third-party games.

Instead, the company will put more of an emphasis on developing its own titles.

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Major tech layoffs continue

Amazon isn’t the only major tech company that has announced sweeping layoffs in 2023.

Big names, including Ubisoft, Bungie, Splunk, Nokia, LinkedIn, Google, Dell, Telus, and Meta, have significantly scaled back their staffing levels as they continue to navigate challenging economic conditions.

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• Where are layoffs happening in Canada?

Termination agreements for Amazon employees

In Canada, non-unionized employees at Amazon are owed full severance pay when they lose their jobs due to downsizing, corporate restructuring, or the closure of the business.

This includes individuals working full-time, part-time, or hourly in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C.

People working “on contract” or as a contractor may also be owed severance pay — given that many employees in Canada are often misclassified as independent contractors.

Severance can be as much as 24 months’ pay, depending on a number of factors.

Rights to severance for provincially regulated employees
Severance entitlements during mass layoffs
Severance packages in a recession

WATCH: Employment lawyer Lior Samfiru explains why you are still owed severance if you have been downsized on an episode of the Employment Law Show.

Before you accept any severance offer, have an experienced employment lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP review it and your employment contract.

We can tell you if what you have been provided is fair and how to get proper severance if it falls short of what you are actually owed.

If you don’t receive the full amount, which happens often, you have been wrongfully dismissed and are entitled to compensation.

In some cases, employers pressure staff into accepting poor severance packages, such as imposing a deadline for accepting the offer.

Non-unionized employees in Canada have up to two years from the date of their dismissal to pursue a claim for full severance pay.

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