NEW YORK: Praytell is laying off fewer than ten members of its 180-person staff.
CEO Andy Pray announced the agency’s decision to let go of “talented folks” in a LinkedIn post Thursday afternoon.
“Parts of our business are growing explosively, thankfully. Other pockets are a bit slow, mostly due to a bogey that truly, for once, was no-one's fault. And so for the first time we had to say goodbye to some really, truly talented folks who deserve to find an agency with more consistent workflow,” Pray wrote.
Pray wrapped the post on the employment-focused social platform by calling for agencies in search of talent to reach out in hopes of connecting employees affected by the layoffs with potential new opportunities.
“Though this was a relatively small action, impacting fewer than 10 of our 180 folks, even if it was one person it'd be important to exhaust all efforts to help them find new agencies or brands, so we're doing just that. I've already heard from several agencies via LinkedIn, which was the point,” Pray said via email of his decision to make the announcement in a social post.
He added that while it is of course easier to not say anything publicly, his firm “promised those impacted we'd do our best to help find new homes, and we think following through is important.”
Project manager Evan Maroun announced he was part of the series of layoffs last Friday in his own LinkedIn post.
“Really wish I didn't have to make this post but here I am. I was suddenly laid off from my PM role at Praytell due to reasons out of my control and am now currently looking for new opportunities,” he wrote.
In 2020, Pray criticized the “silence from PR agencies” in a LinkedIn post, calling out firms for not being more transparent around pay cuts and furloughs. Announcing the layoffs publicly is part of Praytell’s efforts to be transparent with employees and the public.
Pray cited the reason for cuts as an “isolated wing of work” hitting a “speed-bump” which left several staff members without forecasted work. The decision was extremely considered and compassionately made, according to Pray.
Despite the connotation of layoffs, Pray says the agency is on track for its best year in history with its biggest new business wins and best profitability. The firm does not expect more layoffs and is currently hiring in other “pockets,” Pray added.
Praytell joins a series of companies cutting back on their workforce this year amid concerns about economic uncertainty. Weber Shandwick let go of just under two dozen staff members in late February. Meta and Spotify were among other companies with layoffs early this year.
Praytell clients include Fender, Sally Beauty, Destination Canada and Logitech, among others. Earlier this year, Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts and Renaissance Hotels, two large brands under the Marriott International umbrella, named Praytell as their global PR AOR.
Praytell launched in late 2012 and was acquired by agency network Project nearly four years later. It expanded to Australia in early 2021.
The agency reported a 16% increase in revenue globally to $29 million and a 14% increase in the U.S. to $28 million in 2022, according to PRWeek’s 2023 Agency Business Report.