Periscope Laid Off 50 Employees Last Week

By Erik Oster 

Minneapolis creative agency Periscope went through a round of layoffs last week.

A Periscope spokesperson confirmed the layoffs in a statement, adding that the staffing reduction comprised “50 of the 1,100 people employed in the Agency Solutions group at parent company Quad.”

The Wisconsin-based printing company Quad/Graphics acquired Periscope in November 2018. The agency’s statement attributed the cause of the layoffs to the “fast-changing market conditions through the first five months of this year and a continued uncertainty into 2021 due to Covid-19.”

“Like many of its industry peers, Periscope is taking proactive steps to address current and expected reductions in marketing spend across the broad array of services it provides. At the same time, the agency continues to evolve how it serves clients,” the statement continued.

The layoffs follow Periscope instituting staggered furloughs across the agency last month. That measure came with pivots in how the agency is serving clients, including responding to an increased demand for strategic guidance. To that end, Periscope recently hired Nathan Young as group strategy director.

“With Periscope, we continue to develop an agile agency focused on solutions that address our clients most pressing marketing needs and drive top-line growth in a changing and challenging market,” Quad president, Agency Solutions Eric Ashworth said in a statement. “We are continually strengthening areas of our business, including hiring talent with deep experience, to enable us to surround our clients’ businesses with effective ideas and solutions.”

The agency has undergone a series of staffing reductions over the course of the past year and a half, with rounds of layoffs preceding the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Periscope opened 2020 with a round of layoffs impacting around 3% of staff, following a similar round of layoffs last March.

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