Well-funded construction giant Katerra cuts 117 jobs in Washington state as part of reported closure

Katerra was helping build the new Founders Hall at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. It was set to be the first building on UW’s campus to feature cross-laminated timber (CLT) and the first project in Seattle to rely on CLT as a structural element. (Katerra Photo)

Construction giant Katerra, which has raised more than $2 billion in venture capital, is shutting down, according to a report from The Information.

A Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification was also filed Tuesday with the Washington Employment Security Department that shows the company laying off 117 workers in the state starting June 4.

We’ve reached out to Katerra for comment and will update this story when we hear back.

Katerra worked on more than 10 projects in Washington state and Seattle, and in 2019 opened a 270,000 square-foot timber factory in Spokane, Wash. It is currently helping build Founders Hall at the University of Washington’s business school. Just last month the project received a delivery of 292 unique cross-laminated timber panels. It’s set to be the first building on UW’s campus to feature cross-laminated timber (CLT) and the first project in Seattle to rely on CLT as a structural element.

The Information reported that Katerra is likely to walk away from “dozens” of projects it agreed to build.

SoftBank-backed Katerra uses technology and software for its end-to-end construction service across a range of building types — “transforming construction through innovation of process and technology,” reads its website.

Founded in 2015, the Menlo Park, Calif.-based company employed more than 8,000 people last year but now only shows around 2,400 employees on LinkedIn following layoffs over the past year.

Late last year Katerra appointed Kris Beason as head of Pacific Northwest construction. Beason was previously a VP at HITT Contracting Inc. She succeeded Greg Smith, also based in Seattle, who now leads Katerra’s multifamily residential platform.

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