“Decimation” is a process that goes back to the days of the Roman army. It means, essentially, that one in 10 in a certain army unit is killed. It was typically reserved as a punishment for mutiny. That’s almost what SiriusXM (NASDAQ:SIRI) did to its own workforce. Investors looked on the move with a modest positivity, notching SiriusXM up slightly in Monday afternoon trading.
SiriusXM stopped short of a full decimation, firing only 8% of its total workforce. But to the roughly 475 people who lost jobs, the difference is comparatively unimportant. CEO Jennifer Witz sent out the bad news at nine this morning, noting that the firm already saw a set of cuts from real estate to content and marketing spending. Now, the staff cuts are just the latest—and perhaps largest—cutback seen yet.
As for why the cuts took place, the usual reasons apply. Witz noted that there’s an increasing sense of uncertainty out in the broader market, so SiriusXM has to be ready accordingly. Thus, it needs greater agility and efficiency, which can only be done with fewer people. The SiriusXM layoffs join a skein of layoffs previously seen throughout the tech industry in firms ranging from PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) to Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT).
Wall Street, however, is a bit hesitant about the company’s overall future. Analysts currently consider SiriusXM stock a Hold, with four Buys, five Holds, and three Sells. However, it comes with 31.55% upside potential thanks to its average price target of $5.65 per share.