Andela lays off 135 staff across five markets

Andela, the Africa-focused software developer training and outsourcing company has laid off 135 staff across five markets.  According to reports, the layoff has mostly affected the company’s senior staff. 

On Tuesday, Andela CEO Jeremy Johnson, is said to have held a video conference call attended by over 1,300 staff from Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Ghana, Egypt, and the United States.  

The CEO, noted that  Andela’s customer base has collectively done fairly well this period. Majority of them have however been massively affected by the coronavirus pandemic hence the startup is projecting a decline in customers. 

‘’While our customer base has held up better than most, the majority have still been impacted by the economic downturn. ‘’ the CEO told the staff in an email seen by TechTrendsKE. 

‘’And while I’ve been blown away by messages from engineering leaders explaining how much they value the Andelans on their team, we’re still going to see churn spike this year as well as a decline in new customers due to the economic uncertainty. Now that we know that growth is going to be much slower than anticipated, we need to cut costs to ensure that we make it to the other side.’’ the email read. 

The layoff represents 10% of the staff size and is the third round of layoffs in the company within the last 9 months. No engineers are impacted by this reduction.

In September last year, it laid off more than 400 developers from its hubs in Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda. The move came as the company looks to restructure its talent pool to more closely align with what it said is the global market demand.

Andela will providing comprehensive severance packages as well as four months of health coverage in every country to the affected staff. In addition, due to the extraordinary circumstances of this period, the company says it has secured two one-time approvals from the its board to allow those who were granted options the ability to be an owner of Andela. 

‘The first is by removing the vesting cliff of any exiting employees who have been with Andela for less than a year so that they can exercise the options that would have vested if it weren’t in place. The second is that for all exiting employees, the company has extended the exercise window from three months to one year. 

‘’If you are impacted, you’ll receive an invitation for your departure meeting today, where you’ll have a chance to ask questions to make sure you understand your package.’’ read the email. 

The layoff are expected to start taking effect from May 8, 2020. 

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Nixon Kanali

Tech journalist based in Nairobi. I track and report on tech and African startups. Founder and Editor of TechTrends Media. Nixon is also the East African tech editor for Africa Business Communities. Send tips to

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