Following SXSW being cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak last week, the company has had to let go of at least 50 staff members - a third of their year-round workforce.
Last week, SXSW was cancelled its yearly event for the first time in 34 years amid health concers over the coronavirus outbreak.
Variety reports that SXSW's parent company SXSW LLC has since let go of approximately 50 staff members, which is nearly a third of their full-time employees.
In a statement to the Austin Statesman, SXSW LLC said, "Due to the City of Austin’s unprecedented and unexpected cancellation of the SXSW 2020 events in March, SXSW has been rigorously reviewing our operations, and we are in the unimaginable position of reducing our workforce. Today we said goodbye to approximately one-third of our full-time staff. Those of us in the business of live events know the level of trust required to execute an event of SXSW’s scale, and we are deeply sad to let people go this soon. We are planning for the future and this was a necessary, but heartbreaking, step."
SXSW could lose tens of millions of dollars due to the festival cancellation. Prior to letting go some of their staff, SXSW co-founder and Managing Director Roland Swenson revealed to the Austin Statesman that their insurance doesn't cover "bacterial infections, communicable diseases, viruses and pandemics".