Here are some companies that made headlines following announcements of major personnel movements in April 2024.


Taiga, manufacturer of off-road electric vehicles, today announced the layoff of 70 employees and a temporary interruption of its production. The Quebec company, specializing in the sale of snowmobiles and electric watercraft, motivates these measures by the current economic context and a mild winter which has negatively impacted the snowmobile sector. Taiga aims to reduce its operating expenses and states that it does not provide forward-looking guidance for future periods. If Taiga’s revenues increased significantly in 2023 ($16.1 million, compared to $3.2 million in 2022), sales costs also increased, from $29.2 million in 2022 to $43 million. last year, resulting in a net loss of $72.5 million for 2023.

The pause in production will allow Taiga to focus on selling its inventory in the United States and Canada, while developing a new sales model to dealers.

Lion Electric, a Quebec-based manufacturer of medium-duty and heavy-duty electric urban vehicles, announced the elimination of 120 jobs as part of a restructuring aimed at streamlining operational expenses and aligning cost structure with current market dynamics. The affected employees, mainly in corporate and product development roles, will reduce the company’s workforce to approximately 1,150, with over 600 in production positions. CEO Marc Bédard cited market challenges, particularly delays with the Canadian federal zero-emission public transit fund, impacting bus deliveries, necessitating additional workforce reduction. Lion assured production capacity remains unaffected and plans further cost-cutting measures including inventory logistics outsourcing, lease expenses reduction, and professional fees. 


Less than two months after the return of its founder at the head of Lightspeed Commerce, the Montreal company announces the elimination of nearly 280 jobs. The CEO justifies this decision by the need for operational efficiency and profitable growth. These cuts represent approximately 10% of headcount expenses and are part of a broader effort to reduce costs. Lightspeed expects the majority of restructuring costs to be incurred in the first quarter of fiscal 2025. Lightspeed maintains its revenue guidance for fiscal 2024 and plans to provide an update when it releases its fiscal 2025 results. fourth quarter in May.

MegaBrands (Mattel), the toy manufacturer, laid off 60 employees in early April at its Saint-Laurent offices due to a reorganization linked to a reduction in toy production planned for 2024. Four years ago, the Quebec Mega Bloks factory announced its intention to relocate its production to China and Mexico, resulting in the loss of 580 jobs. Mattel risks having to repay an $18 million subsidy to Quebec if it does not respect the job maintenance agreement.


Ottawa has announced its intention to reduce the number of government employees by 5,000 positions, with projected savings of $4.2 billion over four years. According to recent government data, there are currently 357,247 federal civil servants in the central public administration. The head of the civil service stressed that all ministries will participate in the development of a plan, involving the evaluation of their civil servants. This measure is part of a broader effort aimed at saving 15 billion within the federal apparatus.

Two months after receiving millions of dollars from the government, Soucy International of Drummondville plans to lay off 75 employees, or approximately 20% of its staff. The layoffs planned for the end of May are described by the company as “temporary”, without however specifying a recall date. The reasons given are a drop in orders. Soucy International, which does not wish to disclose the total number of current employees, has regularly received government aid. The company justifies the layoffs by saying that this aid supports long-term investments and forecasts an economic recovery.

Olymel announced the permanent closure of its Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu plant, primarily processing poultry with some pork products. Reduced production volumes led the plant to operate at 40% capacity. 135 layoffs were confirmed, with closure set for July 19. Production realignment within Olymel’s network will shift operations to nearby facilities with spare capacity. Displaced workers will receive relocation options to neighboring plants.



SOPFEU, Quebec’s forest fire agency, is preparing to face another difficult summer and plans to strengthen its workforce by hiring 160 people, including 80 firefighters, over the next two years, aiming for a 32% increase in its workforce. Quebec is investing $29 million over five years to strengthen fire prevention efforts. New hires for 2024 include firefighters spread across various regions. By 2025, SOPFEU is targeting 480 firefighters statewide. In addition, 16 protection officers, 43 operational staff, managers and specialists will be hired. Recruitment challenges persist, particularly for water bomber pilots, with SOPFEU still short 10 pilots out of the 40 required for its fleet of 14 aircraft.

Ontario hired about 600 wildland firefighters this year, falling short of its planned budget to hire up to 800. In March, the province launched an incentive program offering lump-sum payments to wildland firefighters. Recruiting results vary by region, with some bases exceeding their allocated crews while others have only a third of their usual complement. Crews are deployed throughout the state during fire season as needed.


The Manitoba government, as part of Budget 2024, plans to hire 100 new doctors to address staffing shortages and improve health care access. Government emphasized the need for investments after years of cuts, allocating $309.5 million for staff recruitment, retention, and training. The government will increase funding for physician recruitment and medical residency spots by 38%, supported by the new Health Care Retention and Recruitment Office. Long-Term Care Minister stressed the importance of improving health care culture and accessibility, with a goal to hire 1,000 new health-care workers this year. 



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