TikTok owner ByteDance has started lay-offs at its education division as new Chinese government regulations force the world’s most valuable start-up to retrench from a key growth area, reported the Financial Times.
The Beijing-based company had invested heavily in its plans for online education, acquiring half a dozen businesses in recent years and announcing plans this February to recruit 10,000 more employees for the division.
But those efforts have been undone by new government regulations last month making some of its education businesses illegal. Now the company has started to trim its workforce, according to three FT sources close to the situation, with one person saying several thousand employees would be let go.
The company plans to curtail its business focused on schoolchildren, where the majority of employees will be laid off, with its remaining education efforts to focus on adult education and educational tools, the people said.