InMobi implements restructuring, cutting 5% of jobs across the globe

The chill of uncertainty continues to tame expectations in the ad tech sector as it finds itself at an impasse, primarily caused by rising privacy requirements.

Many expect further delays to Google’s decision on exactly how (and when) it will sunset the use of third-party cookies in its market-leading web browser, Chrome.

In the meantime, ad tech executives have to tighten their belts, resulting in severe disruption to the livelihoods of workers in the space. 

Earlier this week, senior management informed InMobi staff of notable job losses as part of an ongoing restructuring, with the cuts understood to have impacted its U.S., U.K. and APAC teams.

The exact number of layoffs remains unclear, although two separate sources with direct knowledge of the situation said the move cut the ad tech vendor’s workforce by 5%. Based on the 2,500 headcount figure on the company’s Wikipedia page, this would mean its headcount has been potentially cut by as much as 125. 

Specifically, it appears that the company’s U.K. workforce has been significantly affected, experiencing a reduction of more than a third (36%), which now brings the headcount to around 41 employees, as reported by our sources.

One source told Digiday that some staffers were offered alternate roles at InMobi’s operations at its India headquarters, while separate sources claimed that much of the global headcount reduction involved contractors.

InMobi is not the only company in the sector to have trimmed headcount in recent weeks, with even Google itself said to have cut its ad sales team by hundreds.

While the cuts at InMobi are indeed notable, the company’s chief business officer, Kunal Nagpal, has emphasized that they do not indicate any major shifts in the company’s overarching growth strategy. Some streamlining in certain areas of the business like sales has occurred, but there are no wholesale changes in the works. If anything, plans are going to ramp up, especially when it comes to building out the demand-side platform part of the business following its acquisition of Appsumer in 2021.

“Appsumer gave us great learnings; it gave us the needed depth that advertisers have for a reliable, scalable and fully automated performance DSP,” said Nagpal. “Advertising is really fragmented, and we see an opportunity for InMobi DSP to become a platform to reduce that. The value proposition that Appsumer brought to InMobi lives within our DSP offerings and serves as a foundation for its growth.”

It’s a similar story with the consent management platform Quantcast, which InMobi acquired last year.

“The Quantcast acquisition was technology-only and we’re still committed to having a free CMP offering for publishers,” said Nagpal. “We are working to enhance the capabilities that Quantcast originally created, and upgrade it for today’s needs, especially for mobile-first publishers. We will have more to share on that front later in the year and our plan is to continue to invest in this platform over the next few years.”

A separate source suggested InMobi executives are exploring efficiencies across all of its operations, including incorporating automation. 

Founded in 2007 as a mobile advertising specialist outfit, InMobi has raised more than $266 million in funding, with the company’s leadership talking up the prospect of a $15 billion valuation as part of the post-pandemic IPO boom.

However, InMobi missed this window along with several peers who went as far as filing S1 documents, such as Sharethrough and Teads, but Wall Street’s enthusiasm for the space cooled.

However, as sources prepare for the disruption posed by cookie deprecation and Google’s Privacy Sandbox initiative, executives in the space are preparing for a challenging time. 

As one source at this week’s IAB annual leadership meeting told Digiday, “Anyone without deep pockets or some degree of differentiation will have a tough time between now and 2025.”

https://digiday.com/?p=533823

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