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Lazada lets go of C-suites; ex-staff in five of Lazada's six markets sharing CVs online (update)

Samantha Chiew, Jovi Ho and Nicole Lim
Samantha Chiew, Jovi Ho and Nicole Lim • 4 min read
Lazada lets go of C-suites; ex-staff in five of Lazada's six markets sharing CVs online (update)
Some 47 employees with roles ranging from associate to senior vice president have shared their CVs online. Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore
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Top executives from Lazada, including Singapore-based chief customer care officer Brigitte Daubry, are among those affected by layoffs at Lazada, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Edge Singapore understands that Lazada has let go of all its chief marketing officers in various countries.

In addition, a fifth of Lazada's Malaysia staff have been let go, including the country’s chief executive officer and its chief logistics officer. 

Lazada has also shut down LazMall in Vietnam. Launched in 2018, LazMall hosts “recognisable international brands” selected for shoppers on the platform.

They join an undisclosed number of employees affected by Lazada’s ongoing retrenchment exercise, which was first reported by The Edge Singapore on Jan 3

Luca Suino, chief commercial officer of Kuala Lumpur-based IT consulting firm Momentum Commerce, shared a LinkedIn post on Jan 5 inviting affected Lazada employees to list their former positions and include links to their CVs. 

See also: Alibaba's regional online shopping unit Lazada marks new year with layoffs in Singapore (update)

According to his LinkedIn page, Suino was formerly senior vice president of category management at Lazada, and worked in the group’s Malaysia office between October 2017 and February 2021. 

As of 4pm, 47 former employees from five of Lazada’s six markets — Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines — have shared their CVs. Their roles at Lazada range from associate to senior vice president.

Arun Kumar and Gerald Young, two former employees who left the e-commerce company in December 2022 and September 2023 respectively, have created a WhatsApp group to help those affected by the layoffs. In a Jan 4 post on LinkedIn, Kumar, who was previously the head of search and recommendations, invites affected staff to “circulate their CVs”.

See also: Charting artificial intelligence urbanism in Southeast Asia

According to Tech In Asia, Lazada intends to cut about 30% of its manpower across the region. Prior to the current retrenchment exercise, The Edge Singapore understands that Lazada hired as many as 10,000 employees in six countries — the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore.

Lazada Singapore staff are unionised under the Food, Drinks and Allied Workers Union (FDAWU), an affiliated union of National Trades Union Congress (NTUC). In a statement issued on Jan 5, NTUC says it is “deeply disappointed that Lazada has initiated a retrenchment exercise without notifying and consulting FDAWU”.

FDAWU says it has written to Lazada Singapore, stating that the move is “unacceptable”, and it has escalated the matter to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). 

“NTUC stands by FDAWU and affected workers. We, too, are extremely disappointed in this move by Lazada,” says NTUC. “NTUC would like to reiterate that it is critical for companies to work with their union to ensure that a fair and equitable process was carried out to safeguard the interests of all workers, especially our Singaporean core.”

While retrenchments may be “inevitable”, they should only be used as “a last resort”, says NTUC. “Companies must exhaust all other options before making the call to retrench employees. It also appeals to companies to be considerate about the timing of such exercises and to avoid doing such exercises during festive periods, as far as possible.”

The Edge Singapore has reached out to MOM and Lazada’s regional communications team for comment. Lazada Singapore has operated without an in-house communications department since last year. 

The Edge Singapore first reported on layoffs at Lazada’s Singapore office on Jan 3, which affected junior and senior employees from multiple departments, including the commercial and marketing teams.

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While it is unclear how many employees have been laid off so far, the retrenchment exercise could last until Jan 5. One affected employee from Lazada Singapore, who asked to remain anonymous, says meeting rooms have been reserved by HR from Jan 3 to Jan 5. 

Former CEO of Lazada Singapore Loh Wee Lee left the company in August 2023. In an email statement to The Edge Singapore on Jan 3, Loh says he had decided to move on to new opportunities outside of Lazada. 

Loh has since relocated to Hong Kong and is now group chief digital officer at DFI Retail Group D01 -

, part of the Jardine Matheson conglomerate.

— with additional reporting by Khairani Afifi Noordin

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