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Spotify joins Amazon, Microsoft and Google in announcing layoffs, with 6% of staff facing the axe

January 23, 2023, 10:15 AM UTC
Daniel Ek, chief executive officer of Spotify
Drew Angerer—Getty Images

Spotify Technology SA is planning to cut about 6% of its employees, joining a slew of technology companies from Amazon.com Inc. to Meta Platforms Inc. in announcing job cuts to lower costs.

The move was announced in a filing Monday morning, confirming reports from over the weekend that there would be job cuts. The music streaming giant has about 9,800 employees, according to its third-quarter earnings report.

Spotify laid off 38 staff from its Gimlet Media and Parcast podcast studios in October.

Tech companies added to their headcounts during the pandemic but were forced to make reductions in response to diminished advertising revenue and a shaky economic outlook.

Amazon, Meta and Microsoft Corp. were among the biggest companies to announce staff reductions recently, while Google parent Alphabet Inc. said Friday it will cut about 12,000 jobs, more than 6% of its global workforce.

Spotify said in the filing that Dawn Ostroff, chief content and advertising business officer, will leave the company as part of a broader reorganization.

Alex Norström, currently chief freemium business officer, and Gustav Söderström, currently chief research & development officer, will each take on additional responsibilities as co-presidents of the company.

The shares rose 3.9% in early trading at 7:15 a.m. in New York. The stock had lost 58% of its value since the end of 2021.

Spotify made a massive commitment to podcasting beginning in 2019. It spent over a billion dollars on acquiring podcast networks, creation software, a hosting service and the rights to popular shows like The Joe Rogan Experience and Armchair Expert.

Still, the investments have tested investors’ patience. Shares tumbled last year as investors questioned when they’d begin seeing returns. Spotify executives said in June its podcast business would become profitable in the next one to two years.

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