In-flight Wi-Fi provider is Gogo Firing 143 people, or about 14 percent of the workforce, as people continue to avoid air travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. The company fired 600 employees earlier in April and cut executive salaries in April, saying on Thursday that it will “continue certain holidays and maintain previous salary cuts.”
The cuts will “come mainly from the company’s commercial aviation business,” according to a press release released Thursday. Gogo has applied for funding for the CARES Act, but it is unclear whether it has ever received aid.
“Based on our current expectations of the magnitude and timing of an industry recovery and our commercial aviation business, reducing our workforce has become a necessary step,” said Oakleigh Thorne, CEO of Gogo in a statement. “We are not taking this action lightly, but we believe it is critical to maintain our financial flexibility while maintaining the quality of our service and relationships with our customers.”
Gogo has not made a profit since it was made public in 2013 and underwent a strategic shift before the pandemic hit. The company is shifting its business to rely more on satellite-based internet for its onboard Wi-Fi services. because the current network still relies heavily on air-ground connections that are subject to interruptions and bandwidth issues. The company previously said plans for rolling out a 5G network in 2021 were unaffected by the leave, but it’s not immediately clear if that’s changed.
Gogo isn’t the only provider dealing with pandemic-related battles. Just last week, Global Eagle – providing in-flight Wi-Fi to Southwest – filed for bankruptcy.