The parent company for Parler, an alt-right social media platform, has reportedly laid off a majority of its staff and executives in the last three months, according to the Verge.
Three quarters of its employees have been laid off in recent months, including the chief technology, operations, and marketing officers, leaving only around 20 employees at both Parler and Parlement Technologies, its parent company, the Verge reported. The mass layoffs shine doubt on the financial future of Parler, a private company.
In October, rapper Kanye West, who now goes by Ye, agreed to acquire the app for an undisclosed sum. Parler’s CEO is George Farmer, the husband of Candace Owens, a conservative influencer and friend of Ye. When Ye announced the deal last year, some Twitter users speculated Owens convinced Ye, who is worth $2 billion, to purchase her husband’s platform. In December, the deal was canceled.
Parlement Technologies did not immediately respond to the Observer’s request for comment.
Parler, founded in 2018 by two friends from the University of Denver, functions similar to Twitter and markets itself as a free speech haven. With 16 million users—but less than 1 million who are active monthly—Parler hosts right-wing news stories and welcomes users who have been banned from traditional social networks. QAnon conspiracy theories, 2020 election fraud and anti-semitism can be found on the app. It competes with other conservative apps like Donald Trump’s Truth Social and Rumble, the Peter Thiel-backed YouTube alternative.