Tencent denies laying off employees in short video business restructuring
Published: Aug 08, 2021 07:23 PM
Douyin (left) and Weishi Photo: IC

Douyin (left) and Weishi Photo: IC

Chinese technology company Tencent denied market rumors that the company will lay off employees in a claimed business merger of its short video platform Weishi and Tencent Video amid intensified competition from Kuaishou and Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok. 

The company told the Global Times on Sunday that in its new round of business integration, products from the two units will be integrated into Tencent's online video products department, and they will continue to operate independently. 

The adjustment does not involve any employee lay-offs, the company said.

The comment came after some media reported that Weishi is carrying out large-scale staff optimization, with about 70 percent of its staff being laid off. Some employees have been dismissed, some have been required to transfer to other positions at the firm, while some teams will be merged into other departments. The bulk of Weishi's marketing and promotion activities have been suspended to maintain minimum requirement of operations, media reports said.

Weishi was set up in September 2013 and was closed in April 2017. However, Tencent restarted Weishi in 2018, when other short video platforms Kuaishou and Douyin gained vogue. Its position further weakened after Tencent's instant chatting app Wechat, which has more than one billion users, released its video channels in January 2020.

In April, Tencent integrated Tencent Video, Weishi and Ying Yongbao to set up a new online video business unit, focusing on video content. 

Global Times