Singapore-headquartered coffee chain Flash Coffee is reportedly cutting jobs in Singapore and Indonesia. While it is uncertain how many individuals have been impacted, a check by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE on LinkedIn found that communications, social media and design roles were among those affected. They also included department heads and executives.
According to one of the employees' posts on LinkedIn, the layoffs are due to a "region-wide reorganisation and ongoing financing efforts". MARKETING-INTERACTIVE has reached out to Flash Coffee for comment.
Flash Coffee is backed by Rocket Internet and raised an additional US$5 million in Series B funding last month, according to multiple media reports. This came a few months after it raised US$32.8 million in Series B1 funding. Last April, it bagged US$15 million in Series A funding led by White Star Capital. Back then, the brand said the new funding will be used to expand the brand in 10 markets across Asia Pacific.
The brand launched in January 2020 and as of 2021 had 50 locations across Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia. Last year, the brand said the majority of its stores were already achieving profitability and demonstrating the success of its business model.
In 2021, it also opened three new outlets per week and set sights on the number to be tripled to 10 store launches weekly. Flash Coffee previously had the ambition to open 300 additional stores across Asia Pacific by the end of 2021.
Separately, the tech-enabled coffee chain has been trying to think out of the box for its marketing. In February, it tied up with Bumble to brew up the perfect date for Valentine's Day, offering Bumble users two small iced lattes for free, while stocks last, when they show their Bumble Date profile to the baristas.
A few months later, it partnered with foodpanda's Pau Pau and had the latter take over select Flash Coffee outlets. This joint campaign was part of foodpanda's Pandafest, a month-long promotional campaign by the food delivery platform. As a result, Flash Coffee's stores at PLUS, Orchard Gateway, Lot One, JEM and Jurong Point had decorations of Pau Pau and served up co-branded cup sleeves.
More recently, Flash Coffee collaborated with lifestyle brand Ageless Galaxy for its inaugural merchandise collection themed "Push’n Boundaries" in Asia Pacific. The capsule collection spans five limited editions, including three streetwear-style tees, a metal pin and a sticker pack, and is available in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan and South Korea. It is also active on TikTok, jumping on trends to tickle consumers. Its Singapore account currently has 5,466 followers and 273.8k likes.
This is no doubt a tumultuous period for tech companies. Giants including Meta, YouTube, Snap, Salesforce, and Twitter have laid off several employees. At the same time, companies including foodpanda, Netflix, and GoTo have also reduce staff headcount. Forrester VP, principal analyst J.P. Gownder previously said that tech companies that have yet to reduce their staff headcount are "carefully considering" doing so. In fact, more layoffs might be expected in the next few months as firms plan for 2023.
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