Streaming company SoundCloud is cutting about 20 percent of its global workforce. Billboard reported on August 3 SoundCloud CEO Michael Weissman told staff in a company memo that the change is largely due to the current economic climate. Affected workers would be notified in the coming days.
“Today’s change positions SoundCloud for the long term and puts us on the path to sustainable profitability,” Weissman wrote in the memo. “We’ve already started making sound financial decisions across the company and that now extends to downsizing our team.” In a statement to billboard, a SoundCloud representative confirmed the news, saying: “During this difficult time, we are focused on providing support and resources to those transitioning, while reinforcing our commitment to carry out our mission to lead what’s next in the field. of music.”
In 2017, SoundCloud laid off about 40 percent of its staff, as it was necessary for the company’s “independent long-term success.”
In March 2021, SoundCloud implemented a new payout system that allocates funds paid by subscribers or advertisers directly to the artists that fans choose to stream, rather than pooling subscription and ad money together and then distributing it based on which artists the most of the streams contributed, such as its competitors Spotify and Apple Music. In July, they signed a licensing deal with Warner Music Group to share the same royalty system.
SoundCloud is just one of several tech companies that have recently announced layoffs (Tesla, Substack, Coinbase, and OpenSea, to name a few) or changes to its hiring plans. In June, Spotify said in a company memo it would reduce its workforce by 25 percent and “evaluate” the growth of the company’s workforce. Other companies such as Google, Twitter and Meta have also recently announced hiring delays and freezes, while Apple reportedly plans to delay hiring by 2023.