Amazon cuts down staff at Prime Air drone project
NEW YORK (US) – Amazon.com Inc said on Thursday it had laid off a considerable number of staff working on the e-commerce giant’s delivery drone project as part of a reorganisation of the team.
The US retailer has been working on to deliver goods to a large number of its customers by using a fleet of unmanned drones. It had received federal approval in August to begin testing commercial deliveries in the country.
Amazon spokeswoman Kristen Kish said in a statement, without providing a number on how many employees will be laid off, “We are reorganising one small team within our larger Prime Air organisation to allow us to best align with the needs of our customers and the business.”
Kish said the company was working to find roles for the employees affected “in the areas where we are hiring”.
The Financial Times reported that the company had laid off R&D and manufacturing staff from Amazon Prime Air project and had reached tentative deals with two external manufacturers – Austria’s FACC Aerospace and Spain’s Aernnova Aerospace – to build components for its long-awaited drone.
The full terms of the agreements with the manufacturers were still being finalised, the FT report said, citing a person familiar with Amazon’s plans.