People

Company that once shot money out of guns at Dreamforce lays off 55 workers

SalesLoft attributed the layoffs to the pandemic, which has caused sales to fall and scores of salespeople that use the company's software to lose their jobs.

People attending Dreamforce
Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

An Atlanta-based sales software startup that once famously shot money out of guns at Salesforce's Dreamforce conference has been forced to lay off around 55 employees, a vivid illustration of the damage the coronavirus crisis is doing to a tech industry that was flying high.

SalesLoft attributed the layoffs to the pandemic, which has caused sales to fall and scores of salespeople that use the company's software to lose their jobs. (It's worth noting that the money blasted from guns by SalesLoft was only $250 in $2 bills, so it wouldn't have saved any jobs here).

"I give Kyle Porter and the rest of the ELT a lot of credit in the way the situation was handled, as disappointing as the result may be," former SalesLoft user experience researcher Rob Solomon said of the company's CEO and executive leadership team in a post on Linkedin.

A company spokesperson confirmed it did layoffs and said, "Nearly every company would benefit from hiring SalesLoft alumni, as they are all great people."

The company, which had been one of Atlanta's fastest growing tech outfits, was most recently valued at $600 million. It's in a competitive field: San Francisco-based Groove announced Thursday that it raised $12 million from investors. Another competitor, Seattle-based unicorn Outreach, has so far avoided layoffs, while reportedly seeing mixed results — with some customers like DoorDash surging and others forced to pull back.

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Michelle Ma

Michelle Ma (@himichellema) is a reporter at Protocol, where she writes about management, leadership and workplace issues in tech. Previously, she was a news editor of live journalism and special coverage for The Wall Street Journal. Prior to that, she worked as a staff writer at Wirecutter. She can be reached at mma@protocol.com.

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