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Iqiyi's adventure VR lockout: CEO "standby", everyone begged Gong Yu to announce a new round of layoffs after failing to achieve results.

2024-07-21 Update From: SLTechnology News&Howtos shulou NAV: SLTechnology News&Howtos > IT Information >


Shulou( Report--

"PICO laid off 40% of its staff and halved its staff. Iqiyi's adventure VR, which laid off 70% of his staff, cut his ankle directly! and he didn't get the money!"

Following August this year, iqiyi's VR company "Dream blooming" (hereinafter referred to as "Adventure VR") business stagnated, more than 100 employees were owed wages. Sina Technology once again learned that Adventure VR is launching a new round of layoffs, which will reduce the number of people in the company to 40-50.

According to people familiar with the matter, more than 60 people who have been laid off have not yet received compensation or compensation for unpaid wages. "at least 50 employees have sent 'help letters' to leaders such as parent company iqiyi CEO Gong Yu, but have not received a reply."

In addition, adventure CEO Xiong Wen has completely resigned, temporarily acting on behalf of CEO Bai Peng to play the role of "fire captain", but suffering from "cash flow anxiety", can only wait and see, at any time to retreat.

As of press time, iqiyi did not respond.

"at least 50 people asked for help from Gong Yu, but did not respond." in August this year, Sina Technology reported that iqiyi VR was exposed as a 'shutdown'. According to previous reports, iqiyi's arrears of wages are mainly due to the fact that the 400 million yuan C round of financing announced by the company in January this year has not been fully received, resulting in a break in the capital chain.

According to the person familiar with the matter, the impact of the broken capital chain appeared in March, with more than 100 people in arrears at first. By the beginning of August, the company's cash flow bottomed out, the company urgently laid off a large number of staff, and the number of staff was reduced to about 60. Due to the company's inability to pay the rent, the office also moved back to the iqiyi Youth Center Building from Wangjing. At that time, Adventure VR agreed to pay all arrears of wages and compensation by August 31. But so far, the relevant payment has been unable to be cashed.

Another person familiar with the matter said that the company recently launched layoffs again, reducing the number of employees to about 50. "this round of laid-off employees are claimed to be paid three months' salary in 9-10-11, but they have not made up for anything before."

Over the past few days, many employees have begun to work in groups to arbitrate, sue for rights and ask for opinions from senior officials. At least 50 current or former employees have sent letters to Gong Yu for help, but did not respond.

The fire captain, who also suffered from the fact that the company relied on iqiyi, why did he suddenly die?

According to the person familiar with the matter, Xiong Wen, the former CEO of VR, left the company three months ago. "when Bai Peng entered the company in July, Xiong Wen was basically out of work, and by around October this year, Xiong Wen had officially left his job." At present, "Adventure VR is mainly played by Bai Peng temporarily on behalf of CEO to play the role of 'fire captain', but for Bai Peng acting CEO, the company has not released an email, Bai Peng himself also holds a wait-and-see state on this matter and may leave at any time."

The person pointed out that the purpose of introducing Bai Peng is to "turn the tide and help the building to fall." Bai Peng's greater ability lies in the B-end sales ability, the future adventure VR development focus will gradually focus from the C-end market to the B-end. But for Adventure VR, such a transition is not easy. After all, in the B-end market of VR Touxian products, there are already big friends VR, HTC and other competitors occupying earlier positions on this track.

Therefore, after the introduction of him, it did not achieve the effect. Today, the core problem in front of him is still "lack of money".

On the one hand, due to the late payment of the capital investment in Qingdao West Coast New area introduced at the end of 2022 and the slowness of the parent company iqiyi's rescue action, the VR capital chain was obviously broken, and all staff arrears of wages and redundancy compensation were repeatedly breached. On the other hand, due to the company layoffs and other existing problems can not be solved, the emergence of employee group lawsuits, investors' confidence in adventure VR has been greatly reduced, and it is very difficult to "transfusion" through the sale of products or the introduction of new capital.

It is worth noting that the current adventure VR next generation of new mixed reality MR flagship new product research and development has been completed, originally scheduled for the first half of this year, but due to funding and layoffs have not been properly resolved, the new product has not been released as scheduled.

Most of the domestic head VR teams have scattered in the coming 2023, which is destined to become a cold year for the development of domestic "meta-universe" such as AR / VR / MR. Because in this year, byte beat PICO and adventure VR, the two most promising VR teams in China, have successively staged a tragedy of layoffs.

At the staff meeting at the beginning of this month, PICO CEO Zhou Hongwei formally announced the adjustment of the organizational structure of PICO, laying off more than 300 employees, involving marketing and sales services, Studios, video, platform business and other teams, accounting for about 23% of layoffs. At the same time, PICO's mobile OS team will incorporate byte jump into the middle of product development and engineering architecture.

According to previous public data, the total number of PICO has exceeded 2000 at its peak, but it has already laid off 20% of its workforce by 30%. After several large-scale layoffs, the company's workforce has now shrunk to half its peak.

In August this year, due to the adventure that the business came to a standstill before the final payment of shareholders, VR had no choice but to lay off staff after many months, and more than 100 employees were owed wages. now the company has only about 50 employees, and finally ushered in a class action lawsuit from the company's employees.

According to the quarterly tracking report of the global AR / VR head show market released by IDC, the global AR / VR head show shipments reached 11.23 million units in 2021, with the market growing by 92.1% over the same period last year, of which VR head show shipments reached 10.95 million units. On the domestic side, iqiyi Adventure VR online e-commerce channel shipments accounted for 27.4% of the year, ranking second in the industry, together with the industry leader byte beating PICO to carve up more than half of the market share. Now, however, the two giants, which have carved up more than half of the domestic market share, have successively fallen into the dilemma of layoffs.

"from the point of view of insiders, it is true that the outside world has been overly optimistic about the industry, and the facts show that it is more appropriate to focus on core technologies and products until the products are mature and then promoted on a large scale." Some practitioners in the VR industry told Sina Science and Technology.

After the brief revelry that Facebook renamed META and All in meta-universe in 2021, the once-high-profile AR / VR / MR enterprises have once again fallen into a new cold winter. After the tide recedes, when investors become cautious, whether they can really rely on product power to get players to pay the bill is becoming a new goal for AR / VR / MR companies.

But in the absence of capital, it has become more and more difficult to achieve the goal.

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