MyPillow laid off 120 workers in Shakopee on Thursday so some of its production space can be reconfigured for the founder’s new business endeavor.
Mike Lindell, founder and chief executive, said Friday he is curtailing production volume for the next month as two production facilities in Shakopee and a newly purchased building in Savage are transformed for his new business, MyStore.com.
“I had to lay them off because you can’t have employees in there while doing this big shift,” Lindell said.
The new company will be an online marketplace for products from inventors and entrepreneurs, Lindell said. MyStore has signed up about 100 such companies, which he said were vetted to make sure they weren’t “stolen ideas” or “corrupt businesses.” MyStore will fulfill and ship all orders placed on the marketplace.
Lindell said the displaced MyPillow workers were given a week’s pay and three options. They could find a new job on their own, wait for a call in six to eight weeks when he’s hiring workers again or go to work for another company in the southwest suburbs that Lindell had arranged to hire them. He declined to identify that firm.
“This was a very tough decision. They are great workers,” Lindell said. “Most of the workers, I think, they will grab jobs right away, but hopefully some of them come back.”
MyPillow employs about 1,500 people, with about 500 remaining in production following this week’s cuts. Lindell said the company has about eight weeks' worth of inventory stockpiled.
As for his new business, he envisions a 20,000-person workforce within the year. Lindell didn’t offer additional details on his growth projections, adding only that “this thing is a massive platform.”
The company has about 400,000 square feet of space right now, which is currently nearly all used for production. After the renovation, it will be about 50% production and 50% fulfillment, Lindell said.