SoundCloud has announced that it will be laying off roughly 20 percent of its workforce due to recent changes in the economic and financial landscape, according to reports by Billboard and Variety.
“During this difficult time, we are focused on providing the support and resources to those transitioning while reinforcing our commitment to executing our mission to lead what’s next in music,” the company wrote in a statement shared with Variety.
CEO Michael Weissman sent an email to SoundCloud employees on Wednesday (August 3) announcing the layoffs, which will impact employees worldwide, as Billboard reports. “Today’s change positions SoundCloud for the long run and puts us on a path to sustained profitability,” Weissman says in the email. “We have already begun to make prudent financial decisions across the company and that now extends to a reduction to our team.”
The announcement follows recent partnerships with Pandora and Splice, an acquisition of the artificial intelligence company Musiio, and a partnership with the management and creative services company Solid Foundation, as Variety points out.
In March 2021, the company announced a new “fan-powered” royalty distribution system that allegedly helps support smaller artists. They later claimed that the Portishead song “SOS” earned 500 percent more under this new royalty system than it had under the “pro-rata” model used by Spotify and others. In 2017, SoundCloud laid off nearly 40 percent of its workforce in an effort to “control” its “independent future.”
Weissman’s email also notes that SoundCloud employees in the United States and United Kingdom “will be notified over the next few days” on the status of roles with the company.
Read “Is There a Fairer Way for Streaming Services to Pay Artists?” on the Pitch.