Robotics company Symbotic has cut 200 jobs as part of a move to outsource manufacturing of its machines that move goods around large warehouses for Walmart and other retailers.
The Wilmington-based company said it was ceasing building its own robots at a Montreal facility and would make a “significant curtailment” of manufacturing at its Massachusetts headquarters. As a result, the company will lay off 100 full-time employees and 100 contractors.
“Our teams are working diligently to be more efficient as they keep our many deployment projects running on budget and on schedule and executing a new outsourcing strategy,” chief executive Rick Cohen said on a call last week with analysts. “We are now aggressively diversifying training and scaling up a network of supplier and contractor partners.”
The company employed 1,120 full-time employees as of September, 2022. It did not disclose the number of contractors employed.
Symbotic’s revenue and order backlog have skyrocketed over the past year as customers including Walmart have been deploying its warehouse robotics systems. Revenue in the company’s most recent quarter ended March 25 nearly tripled to $267 million, while the company posted a net loss of $55 million for the quarter, up from $30 million a year earlier. Symbotic’s backlog of unfilled customer orders for robots totaled $12 billion.
The quarterly results included severance costs of $3 million and a total of $8 million in restructuring charges to make the shift to outsourced manufacturing, chief financial officer Thomas Ernest told analysts.
Symbotic went public almost one year ago by merging with a blank-check company. With revenue growing more quickly than analysts expected, the company’s stock price has gained 122 percent so far this year. The company is among a growing cadre of local robotics companies working on warehouse automation, including Boston Dynamics, Amazon Robotics, and Locus Robotics.