Alphabet cuts jobs at two of its ‘Other Bets’ divisions

13 Jan 2023

Image: © Author Name/

Life sciences company Verily is letting go of 15pc of its staff, while robotics and AI division Intrinsic is laying off 20pc.

This week, Google’s parent company Alphabet announced job cuts at two of its subsidiaries, both of which are part of its Other Bets venture capital and private equity division.

Other Bets includes companies such as Verily, Instrinsic, Waymo, Calico and CapitalG.

The first to be hit by lay-offs was health and life sciences company Verily, which is letting go of 15pc of its staff, amounting to around 240 people.

TechCrunch reported yesterday (12 January) that Alphabet’s robotics and AI division, Intrinsic, is laying off 40 employees. Intrinsic was only launched in 2021 to build software for industrial robots. These lay-offs at the new company will amount to a 20pc reduction in headcount.

“Intrinsic’s leadership has made the difficult decision to let go of a number of our team members,” a spokesperson told TechCrunch.

“We have communicated the news directly with them. We fully acknowledge how hard this will be and are offering as much proactive support as possible. This decision was made in light of shifts in prioritisation and our longer-term strategic direction.”

Verily is several years older than Intrinsic. According to its CEO Stephen Gillett, the company is making the staff cuts because it wants to restructure its operations.

In a memo to employees which was published on Verily’s website on 11 January, Gillett outlined the changes the restructuring would bring.

Warning staff that the memo would be long, he first thanked employees for their hard work, before explaining the changes the company plans to make. Only then did he reveal that the discontinuation of some areas of the business would mean letting staff go.

“While these programmes are promising and led by talented Veeps [Verily employees], and some of their innovations will integrate into our other core solutions, we cannot do everything and have had to make some difficult choices,” he wrote.

“Some Veeps will be redeployed to other teams; others will unfortunately be leaving us. These people have helped make Verily the company it is today, and I know how hard it is to see valued friends and colleagues depart.”

Gillett then assured staff that those leaving the company would be offered “the support they need to ease their transitions”.

He said Verily would “offer help in many ways over the coming weeks and months ranging from severance to coaching and outplacement services”.

He signed off his memo with the promise of an update about the company’s “path forward” on 18 January. He said there would be a chance for employees to hear more about the restructuring at this meeting.

He also reassured the outgoing “Veeps” that they “will always be a part of our story”.

10 things you need to know direct to your inbox every weekday. Sign up for the Daily Brief, Silicon Republic’s digest of essential sci-tech news.

Blathnaid O’Dea is Careers reporter at Silicon Republic