BuzzFeed announced on Monday that they would cut their workforce by 15%. The news comes days after BuzzFeed made an article on the Mueller investigation that turned out to be false. In the article, Buzzfeed claimed that Robert Mueller had found documents that suggested Donald Trump had told Michael Cohen to lie to congress about building a skyscraper in Moscow. The article's legitimacy was later challenged by a spokesman for the special counsel. The article seriously damaged BuzzFeed's reputation and many workers have now been fired.
Jonah Peretti, the Chief Executive of BuzzFeed, claims that the workers were fired to reduce costs and to becomes less dependent on fundraising."The restructuring we are undertaking will reduce our costs and improve our operating model so we can thrive and control our own destiny, without ever needing to raise funding again,” says Peretti. “These changes will allow us to be the clear winner in the market as the economics of digital media continue to improve."
Despite Peretti claiming that the layoffs were done in order to reduce costs, it seems clear that the article on the Mueller investigation was a major factor.