Amazon Plans to Lay Off “Hundreds of Employees” at LA Studios

Announcement raises questions of how downsizing will impact commercial leases

Amazon to Lay Off “Hundreds of Employees” at LA Studios
Amazon's Andy Jassy; Amazon MGM Studios, Culver City (Getty, Amazon) is cutting more jobs at its streaming service and studio divisions in Los Angeles, putting its real estate footprint up in the air.

The Seattle-based e-commerce and production company will cut “hundreds more employees” at Prime Video and Amazon MGM Studios, the Commercial Observer reported, citing an email announcement from Amazon executive Mike Hopkins. The story was first reported by The Information.

“Our industry continues to evolve quickly and it’s important that we prioritize our investments for the long-term success of our business, while relentlessly focusing on what we know matters most to our customers,” the email from Hopkins reads.

It’s not clear how the recent layoffs will affect commercial real estate across the region. However, Amazon leases space in Culver City and Hackman Capital Partners’ Culver Steps office park and most of its roughly 720,000-square-foot Culver Studios, according to CoStar.

Media and tech companies that drive commercial real estate in L.A. continue to readjust after years of rapid growth, which included Amazon Studios’ $8.45 billion deal to acquire MGM to bolster its battlelines in the so-called streaming wars, according to the Observer.

Last week, Google scotched plans to occupy the former Westside Pavilion in West L.A., which for years was set to be a landmark office development by Hudson Pacific Properties.

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“We’ve identified opportunities to reduce or discontinue investments in certain areas while increasing our investment and focus on content and product initiatives that deliver the most impact,” Hopkins said in his email. “As a result of these decisions, we will be eliminating several hundred roles across the Prime Video and Amazon MGM Studios organization.”

The cuts come after Amazon laid off 27,000 employees in 2022 and last year. Bloomberg also reported Amazon-run live streaming platform Twitch let go 500 employees, or 35 percent of its staff.

The Amazon layoffs come on the heels of unprecedented levels of studio and soundstage development and expansion across Greater Los Angeles.

Leaders in the development boom include Amazon Studios’ landlord Hackman Capital Partners and the Blackstone-backed studio arm of Hudson Pacific Properties

— Dana Bartholomew

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