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Roblox China faces layoffs as the company undergoes "evaluation"

It's safe to say that the launch of the Chinese version of Roblox, LuoBuLesi, didn’t quite go to plan
Roblox China faces layoffs as the company undergoes
  • Roblox China is letting go of a further 15 employees.
  • These further redundancies come on the back of 30 similar layoffs last month.
  • The popular building/metaverse/experience continues to be unavailable on app stores.

As we approach the end of 2023, looking back it's clear to see this has been the year of the layoff. Since January, every month has seen another swathe of companies announcing cutbacks, letting go of employees as they try to stay afloat through a time of post-pandemic inflation.

It didn’t help that 2022 took a dive in player spending, decreasing for the first time in mobile gaming history.

The latest layoffs come from Roblox China, with employees in its Shenzhen headquarters affected - as are teams working in the US.

In the East

Roblox China first opened in 2020 and via a joint effort with Tencent, succeeded in securing a licence to launch the Chinese version of Roblox, LuoBuLesi. However, it mysteriously vanished from Chinese app stores in December 2021 and went fully offline in January 2022.

The removal of Roblox China is impacting the game's relevance and a further 15 staff members are being let go. A spokesperson confirmed this to, explaining these 15 employees were let go as part of an "evaluation of the operational structure" of the company.

Despite the layoffs and LuoBuLesi’s offline status, Roblox China still has a long-term vision for its presence in the country.

The spokesperson continued: "Those employees whose roles were impacted have been informed. These actions are specific to LuoBu and its unique business and operational needs. No other teams within LuoBu or Roblox are impacted."

However, only last month Roblox downsized its talent acquisition team and let go of 30 employees. CEO David Baszucki then announced that employees must come back to headquarters in 2024 to keep their jobs, even if they would need to relocate to do so. This decision was "extremely difficult" for the company to make, but ultimately remote working was only implemented as a measure during the pandemic, and Roblox is eager to move to hybrid working.

Inevitably, more employees will be parting ways with Roblox as a result of this policy and the company's current standing in China, though the company is keen to highlight that they have made the process "as systematic and fair as possible".