The director (legal) of Meta's India arm has been laid off as part of the company's planned trimming of 10,000 people globally, at a time when the big tech firm is enmeshed in several important legal and regulatory matters in the country, according to people aware of the matter.
Amrita Mukherjee, director (legal), Meta India and a few more people from the company's legal team have also been axed, sources said.
According to Mukherjee's LinkedIn profile, she has been with the company for the past 10 months. Prior to this role, she was Hotstar's head of legal.
Moreover, Meta has also filed a lawsuit against the Indian government on its demand of traceability of messages in its amendment to Information Technology Rules which would require WhatsApp to break its end-to-end encryption. This matter is still pending in the court.
Moneycontrol reported last week that Manish Chopra, who had been leading Facebook parent Meta's partnership efforts in India, has stepped down after a tenure of four and a half years with the company.
This marks the fifth major departure at Meta India in the past year, following the exit of former India head Ajit Mohan and public policy head Rajiv Aggarwal in November 2022.
WhatsApp India head Abhijit Bose also left the company at the same time. Subsequently, Mohan and Aggarwal joined Snap Inc and Samsung, respectively, while Bose had earlier stated plans to work on a new startup.
After Mohan's departure, Chopra was serving as the company's interim leader for a brief period of two months until Sandhya Devanathan took over as Meta's India head from January 1, 2023.
According to a Reuters report, Meta India's director of marketing Avinash Pant and Saket Jha Saurabh, director and head of media partnerships, are also among the top leaders affected by the latest retrenchment.
The first round of 11,000 job cuts happened in November 2022, while the second round of 10,000 layoffs was announced in March 2023 and is scheduled to be completed in May 2023.
Over the past few months, Meta has also implemented several measures to aggressively cut costs and become a more nimble organisation as the company embarks on what chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has dubbed the "year of efficiency."
These steps come amid a slow advertising demand due to a tough macroeconomic climate, the significant impact of Apple's iOS privacy restrictions on the social networking giant's advertising business, and increased competition from players such as TikTok.
Last month, the company however reported that its advertising sales have returned to growth after three straight quarters of revenue decline on a yearly basis.
Meta posted a 3 percent year-on-year (YoY) increase in its revenue to $28.6 billion in Q1 2023, while profits fell 24 percent to $5.7 billion. The company doesn't disclose country-wise revenue break-up in its quarterly results.
Last Updated at 3:50 PM
Another official based in the US, not Amrita Mukherjee, is the head of legal for India. The story has been corrected to reflect the same.