Zalando plans to hire 1,000 engineers in aggressive expansion, leaked memo shows

German fashion startup Zalando is planning to go on an aggressive hiring spree in 2017, according to a leaked memo seen by Business Insider.

The Berlin-headquartered company, Europe’s largest online fashion retailer, intends to hire 1,000 engineers throughout the course of next year, the memo states.

Zalando currently had around 11,200 employees globally, with offices in Berlin and six other locations, at the end of September. It is in the process of building a new HQ in Berlin that will be able to house up to 5,000 employees when it opens in 2018.

Terry Swann, Zalando’s global head of talent, outlined the company’s hiring plans in a Slack channel that boasts around 400 talent managers and recruitment execs from technology companies across Europe.

In the Slack message, Swann, who used to hire engineers at Google, said that he’s looking for five technical recruiters to help him hire 1,000 engineers in 2017.

The comment from Swann caused “quite a lot of discussion” in the Slack channel, according to a source who wished to remain anonymous.

The recruiters will be based in Berlin and paid between €35,000 (£30,000) and €60,000 (£51,000). That “goes a long way,” according to Swann, who added “you can get a flat in the centre of town for less than 1000 a month.”

Zalando, which has raised over $600 million (£477 million) from investors, claims to sell Europe’s largest selection of clothing, accessories and shoes online. It mixes high street brands with high end designers and independent labels.

The seven-year-old company saw its profits rise to €19.5 million (£16.4 million) in the three months leading up to September, up from a loss of €23.5 million (£20 million) in the previous year. Meanwhile, revenues rose 17% compared with last year to €835 million (£711 million).

At the time, Rubin Ritter, one of Zalando’s co-chief executives, was reported in The Financial Times as saying the company was going “from strength to strength”. He added: “We have built a strong platform for ongoing progress.”

Zalando did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.

The full memo reads:

“Hi All, i’m looking for at least 5 technical recruiters of varying seniority here at Zalando in Berlin. The salary range is €35-€60, which goes a long way in Berlin (you can get a flat in the centre of town for less than 1000 a month). The task is to hire 1000 engineers in 2017, please message me directly if you’re at all interested. Thanks!”

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