Help for H-1B tech workers who've been laid off (or think they might be)

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By Walter Thompson

Friday, November 11, 2022

Welcome to TechCrunch+ Friday

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Image Credits: Bryce Durbin/TechCrunch

According to layoffs.fyi, more than 23,000 tech workers have been laid off so far this month. For comparison, the site tracked 12,463 layoffs in October.

Facebook’s parent company Meta announced the first major job cuts in its history this week, eliminating 11,000 jobs. Like Twitter, Stripe, Brex, Lyft, Netflix and other tech firms based in the Bay Area, many of the employees impacted are immigrants here on worker visas.

An unexpected layoff introduces an element of chaos into anyone’s life, but when an H-1B worker loses their job, a very loud clock starts clicking: unless they can land a new position in 60 days, they are legally required to leave the country.

And because tech companies at every size are enacting hiring freezes and planning more job cuts, their ability to live and work in the U.S. is suddenly in question.

Today at 9:00 a.m. Pacific/Noon Eastern, I’m hosting a Q&A with immigration lawyer Sophie Alcorn for H-1B workers who have been laid off (or think they might be).

Sophie, who writes a weekly advice column for TC+, will share general information for impacted workers and hiring managers. This chat is scheduled for a full hour, and we’ll get to as many of your questions as we can.

“It’s so important for people to have the knowledge to protect themselves, their families and their futures,” says Sophie. “Looking forward to the conversation!”

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3 tips for managing a remote engineering team

3 tips for managing a remote engineering team image

Image Credits: Inok / Getty Images

Pre-pandemic, I managed an office where the CEO and I were the only two people who weren’t on the engineering team. We occupied a pod in a co-working space, so we all sat around one large table.

Outside of our group lunches, the developers rarely spoke to each other, as most communication took place via Slack, Jira and GitHub. Today, that team works remotely.

In a post for TC+, entrepreneur and angel investor Kuan Wei (Greg) Soh shared his top suggestions for managing distributed engineering teams, which includes mandatory standups and at least three hours each day when everyone is available to chat.

“We expect Slack messages to be replied to within an hour, that everyone be reachable if we call them, and that we would work responsibly with our assigned partners,” he says.

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TC Sessions Crypto 2022

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Use IRS Code Section 1202 to sell your multimillion-dollar startup tax-free

Use IRS Code Section 1202 to sell your multimillion-dollar startup tax-free image

Image Credits: BrianAJackson / Getty Images

Founding teams usually select a corporate structure like an LLC or S-Corp, but those who hope to exit for $10 million for more should consider starting up as a Qualified Small Business (QSB) C-Corporation, advises tax attorney Vincent Aiello.

Under IRS Code Section 1202, founders who hold QSB stock for five years or longer will be exempt from paying capital gains tax after a sale.

“It constitutes a significant tax savings benefit for entrepreneurs and small business investors,” Aiello says.

“However, the effect of the exclusion ultimately depends on when the stock was acquired, the trade or business being operated, and various other factors.”

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Revenue-based financing: A new playbook for startup fundraising

Revenue-based financing: A new playbook for startup fundraising image

Image Credits: Cocoon / Getty Images (Image has been modified)

Revenue-based financing can make early-stage startups less dependent on investors so they can hold onto more equity.

With terms that usually range from 12-24 months, many teams use these funds for short-term projects, like sales and marketing campaigns.

“Because the return on these activities may be higher than the cost of revenue-based financing, startups should use revenue-based financing to fund initiatives that will bear fruit soon,” advises Miguel Fernandez, CEO and co-founder of Capchase.

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Pitch Deck Teardown: Syneroid's $500K seed deck

Pitch Deck Teardown: Syneroid's $500K seed deck image

Image Credits: GPC Smart Tags

Stolen-vehicle recovery systems have been available for decades, but a lost pet has higher emotional stakes.

According to Syneroid, a startup that makes smart tags, 10 million pets are lost each year in the United States, but “less than 30% are returned home.”

After raising a $500,000 seed round at a a $3.9 million valuation, the company’s founders shared their 12-slide pitch deck with TechCrunch for a review. “No information has been redacted or omitted,” writes Haje Jan Kamps.

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