Shopee is pulling out of Argentina. MARKETING-INTERACTIVE understands that a cross-border model is not feasible in the country and Shopee only had local seller operations in Argentina. At the same time, Reuters said quoting its sources, that it is closing local operations in Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. While Shopee's cross-border operations in Chile, Colombia, and Mexico will still remain, there will be job cuts to the majority of the teams in these countries. According to Reuters, "dozens of employees" will be impacted. On the other hand, its operations in Brazil remains unaffected.
Shopee told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: "In line with our previously stated focus on efficiency and profitability, we will concentrate on a cross-border model for our early stage operations in Shopee Mexico, Colombia and Chile, and close our pilot operations in Argentina. These changes are to ensure that our resources are focused on key business priorities. We are committed to supporting our local teams and seller communities through this transition."
Meanwhile, Shopee CEO Chris Feng cited the "current elevated macro uncertainty" as the main reason the eCommerce firm is shifting resources to core operations. Hence, it decided to "concentrate on a cross-border model" in those three countries. Safe to say, the writing was on the wall for the teams in Latin America given that Shopee laid off parts of its teams in Argentina, Chile, and Mexico in June this year.
Shopee's woes continue as it most recently was reported to have rescinded jobs amidst adjustments on hiring plans. Some of the impacted employees, who relocated to Singapore, were only told upon arrival. The eCommerce firm previously explained that the impact roles were technology-related and most of the individuals are based in Singapore and China. Also, the vast majority of cases do not involve prospective employees relocating.
Nonetheless, this is not the first time Shopee has pulled out from a market. A few months ago, it withdrew from Spain and also shuttered its operations in India and France. Separately, Sea Group's gaming arm, Garena, was said to have halted its game livestream platform and is axing projects at its development unit Sea Labs. Garena is also reportedly cutting jobs, making redundant about 30 to 40 jobs at its game livestream and community app, Booyah!.
Sea Group posted a total net loss of US$931.2 million during the second quarter and also suspended its eCommerce forecast for 2022 as part of its efforts to adapt to increasing macro uncertainties.
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