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Virgin Atlantic’s CEO Says New Technological Layoffs Will Impact Airlines In 2023

Tech layoffs are one of the newest challenges that the airline sector may encounter. The numerous layoffs in the sector, both in the U.S. and the U.K., “have an influence,” according to Virgin Atlantic’s CEO Shai Weiss, on the tourism sector.

Weiss stated that “the changes in the tech world, to which we are, of course, subject, are enormous travellers across the Atlantic with help of Virgin atlantic and beyond.” The CEO cited the almost 40-year-old airline’s nearly 40 destinations, such as San Francisco, Seattle, and Austin, Texas, which are “high conurbation locations for technological businesses.” The Virgin Atlantic airline is owned by billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and Delta Air Lines.

Weiss, who took over in 2019, stated, “When they decide to downsize their employment, it will influence the travel business more broadly. The CEO’s prediction that business travellers will return in full force by year’s end hasn’t changed, though.

Tech layoffs have increased recently as businesses try to cut costs after hiring too much during the COVID-19 outbreak. When people were compelled to work remotely, the demand for their goods and services increased, which was profitable for businesses.

Heavy giants including Amazon, Google parent Alphabet Inc., Twitter, Facebook parent Meta, Microsoft, Dell, Zoom, and Salesforce have already cut tens of thousands of jobs.

Nearly six weeks into the new year, more than 101,000 worldwide tech workers have already lost their jobs, according to a source.

Many tech companies have grown since three years ago, despite the cuts. Even after the layoffs, Snap’s headcount will be larger than it was a year earlier, the social media company claimed in August when it reduced 20% of its workforce. In recent years, it has added more than 5,600 workers to its workforce.

Technology-Another Segment

By the end of 2023, corporate travel is anticipated to reach pre-pandemic levels, according to Weiss. 80% of 2019’s levels have already been reached for corporate travel over the entire network of the long-haul carrier.

While this is going on, Weiss noted that Virgin Atlantic is experiencing a significant uptick in leisure travel, with record bookings just in the first month of the new year. This shows how travellers are still looking for new experiences.

More About Virgin Group

The Virgin Group has promised to give Virgin Companies $250 million to help them get back on their feet after the current coronavirus outbreak.

Here are some of the ways that Virgin companies have tried to fight the COVID-19 pandemic:

Virgin Atlantic

During the months of May, June, and July, more than 43 million PPE products will be delivered to the United Kingdom by Virgin Atlantic cargo planes. In April, it completed eight freight flights returning more than 120 metric tonnes of critical medical supplies and personal protective equipment from China.

This comprises 3.5 million individual items that will be distributed to NHS frontline staff throughout the United Kingdom. This was made possible by the National Health Service and the Department of Health and Social Care.

On the initial flight, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Unite, and Virgin Care all collaborated. More than three thousand British citizens in Delhi, Mumbai, Cape Town, and Johannesburg were rescued and brought back to the United Kingdom. The hundreds of grounded workers that assist the NHS, including cabin crew who assist Nightingale hospitals, are only a fraction of the many grounded workers who work or volunteer in roles and charities within their community.

There are pilots like James Farwell and flight service managers like Darren Moore among them.

Virgin Australia

With 125 aircraft, Virgin Australia was able to transport thousands of humanitarian supplies to those in need. There was also food and rolls of toilet paper. Virgin Australia is collaborating with OzHarvest to distribute an additional 6,000 meals. This food surplus will save three tonnes of food from being wasted, and it includes some of the airline’s best business class and airport lounge meals.

Virgin Care

More than 7,000 doctors and nurses are employed by Virgin Care to assist with the NHS and social care. As a first step, Virgin Care has assisted individuals in their homes and communities, as well as assisted hospitals in adding as many beds as possible. The National Health Service has reorganised its services and relocated hundreds of employees to better combat the outbreak. Virgin Care has donated more than £75 million to the NHS despite never having turned a profit. The Virgin Group has committed to reinvesting all profits from Virgin Care into the NHS.

Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic manufactures oxygen hoods for hospital patients who have difficulty breathing but do not require a ventilator. Virgin Galactic supplied hundreds of masks, personal protective equipment, and medical supplies, including powered air purifying respirators, to hospitals around the United States. These lifesaving instruments further protect frontline employees who are in close proximity to COVID-19 patients.

Virgin Media

The #stayconnected initiative is supported by Virgin Media’s efforts to keep British homes, companies, and government services online. Virgin Media is providing its monthly subscribers with free minutes and increased bandwidth while prioritising the NHS and other vital service users. More than one million Virgin Media subscribers with speeds below 100 Mbps received a free upgrade from superfast to ultrafast M100 fibre broadband. Additionally, Virgin Media is providing subscribers with increased access to premium television channels at no additional cost. Several new films that were previously available only in theatres are now also available for home viewing.

Virgin Money

Virgin Money desires to assist its customers, workers, and community members. It aids firms in obtaining financing and more time to pay by empowering relationship managers. This aids the CBILS and CLBILS government programs. Online banking, mobile banking, and holiday grace periods for loan, credit card, and mortgage payments are available to customers who wish to bank from home.

Employee morale is maintained by allowing them to work from home, paying for their lunches and travel, and delaying layoffs. Additionally, beginning on April 18 and continuing until the end of the government shutdown, Virgin Money will cover the platform charge for its charitable fundraising website, Virgin Money Giving.

The Virgin Money Foundation is providing local charities with about £850k to support COVID-19 projects. Fundraisers that use Virgin Money Giving, such as Run for Heroes, help NHS Charities work together.

Virgin Orbit

Virgin Orbit has created a feasible commercial bridge ventilation system. The FDA has deemed them safe for use in potentially lethal conditions. Due to its engineering design, manufacturing, and operating expertise, Virgin Orbit was able to rapidly develop a new ventilator, test prototypes, and begin production. The Bridge Ventilator Consortium is comprised of physicians, medical researchers, and medical device engineers who are collaborating to assist numerous low-cost ventilator companies, such as Virgin Orbit, with their combined medical and clinical expertise.

Virgin Radio

This fall, Virgin Radio has scheduled three arena performances in the UK as part of their “Big Thank You Tour.” Important individuals will receive free seats for these events. To generate money for the National Health Service, Chris Evans organised a celebrity silent auction. The auction raised approximately $1,200,000. 

Virgin StartUp and Unite

Virgin StartUp assists entrepreneurs who do not fulfil the qualifications for the UK government’s COVID-19 support programs. Also, they provide a great deal of free business guidance. 

Jeff Skoll and Strive Masiyiwa have collaborated with Virgin Unite, the philanthropic, entrepreneurial foundation of the Virgin Group and the Branson family, to assist African nations in acquiring vital medical equipment. Both Virgin Orbit and Virgin Galactic will make oxygen masks and air pumps in Africa.

Conclusion

Virgin Unite has donated to Crisis Text Line, the Mental Health Fund, and Shout. These are two organisations that provide crisis assistance by text messaging around the clock. The organisation that started it all has already raised $2 million to help people cope with the mental and behavioural impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Many Virgin companies have created incredible in-home experiences to assist locked-in families and individuals. 

Edited by Prakriti Arora

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