‘Unlucky group’: CEO lays off 900 people during Zoom call; video shared online

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(WJW) — Video being shared online shows the CEO of an online mortgage company firing nearly 900 employees during a Zoom call.

Better.com CEO Vishal Garg made the announcement Wednesday from a desk in the video, which has been shared online.

“I come to you with not great news,” he began. “The market has changed, as you know. And we have to move with it in order to survive so that, hopefully, we can continue to thrive and deliver on our mission.”

He said he made the decision himself to cut about 15% of the company’s employees and that it was “really, really challenging.” He said it’s the second time in his career he’s made such a decision.

“The last time I did it, I cried,” He said. “This time I hope to be stronger.”

He added, “If you’re on this call, you are part of the unlucky group being laid off. Your employment here is terminated effective immediately.”

He continued by saying employees could expect an email from HR regarding benefits and severance.

In a statement to SFGATE, CFO Kevin Ryan said having to lay off workers is “gut-wrenching.”

“However, a fortress balance sheet and a reduced and focused workforce together set us up to play offense going into a radically evolving homeownership market,” he said in the statement.

This is not the first time Garg has been involved in controversy at the venture-backed online mortgage lender.

In an email obtained by Forbes last year that was sent to staff, he wrote, “You are TOO DAMN SLOW. You are a bunch of DUMB DOLPHINS… SO STOP IT. STOP IT. STOP IT RIGHT NOW. YOU ARE EMBARRASSING ME.”

SFGATE.com reported that Better.com is valued at $7 billion.

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