Employment Law

TikTok parent ByteDance trimming gaming unit as part of restructuring

A photo with headphones on using a mouse and keyboard. (Photo: ELLA DON / Unsplash)

Following a review of its Nuverse gaming brand, ByteDance has decided to restructure the business.

According to news outlets, including TechCrunch, the parent company of TikTok has begun to lay off staff in its gaming unit.

While a company spokesperson didn’t comment on the job cuts, they said in a statement that ByteDance regularly reviews its businesses and makes “adjustments to centre on long-term strategic growth areas.”

It remains unclear how many employees are being let go, and whether any Canadian workers will be affected.

In addition to the reduction, the Chinese tech giant is looking to sell its mobile gaming studio Moonton, which it purchased for approximately US$4 billion in 2021.

Nuverse, known for various gaming titles, including Marvel Snap and Crystal of Atlan, has reportedly maintained a total workforce of approximately 3,000 people over the last few years.

Major tech layoffs continue

The reported job cuts at Nuverse come amid a flurry of tech sector layoffs in 2023.

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

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Termination agreements for ByteDance employees

In Canada, non-unionized employees at ByteDance 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
TikTok Canada Layoffs and Severance Pay

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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