Peloton announces 400 layoffs, 15% of the workforce, as CEO Barry McCarthy departs

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Peloton, the exercise equipment maker and creator of online fitness classes, has announced that it’s laying off 15 percent of its workforce — 400 people — as CEO, president, and board director Barry McCarthy steps down after two years in the role.

McCarthy, who was previously CFO at Spotify and Netflix, was coerced out of retirement in early 2022 when Peloton co-founder and then-CEO John Foley stepped down as part of a major cost-cutting effort that saw 2,800 employees laid off. Foley remained as executive chair, but he left the company altogether seven months later alongside co-founder and chief legal officer Hisao Kushi.

Peloton says that it’s in the process of finding a successor to McCarthy, with current Peloton chairperson Karen Boone and director Chris Bruzzo serving as interim co-CEOs through the transition.

Peloton went public in 2019, going from an opening day valuation of around $6 billion to a $50 billion company by early 2021. The company was one of the major beneficiaries of the global pandemic, as the world hunkered down at home seeking ways to stay healthy through expensive home exercise equipment including bikes and treadmills. As the world returned to normality, so did Peloton’s shares, which plummeted to $10 billion in January, 2022, a year after its peak.

Today, the New York company’s market cap sits at a little more than $1 billion, however its shares are up nearly 8% in pre-market trading as news of Peloton’s cost-cutting measures emerge. Aside from reducing its headcount by 15%, Peloton said that it also intends to continue reducing its brick-and-mortar footprint in retail showrooms, and double down on its international growth with a more “targeted and efficient” go-to-market strategy.

These announcements come as Peloton prepares to announce its Q3 2024 financials later today. At its previous earnings in February, Peloton’s shares tumbled 24% to a then-all-time low after reporting continued revenue drop and a dismal outlook for the coming months.

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