Spotify announced a layoff of roughly 200 people, or 2% of its workforce, as it conducts a “fundamental pivot” of its podcast unit.
The news was released in an internal update from Sahar Elhabashi, VP, head of podcast business for Spotify.
The company started investing in the podcasting space in 2019, and now claims it is the top podcast publisher in the U.S.
It is now broadening its analytics capabilities by expanding Spotify For Podcasters. And, it is expanding its partnership efforts with podcasters worldwide, it says.
“However, doing so requires adapting; over the past few months, our senior leadership team has worked closely with HR to determine the optimal organization for this next chapter,” Elhabashi adds.
The departing employees will receive “generous severance packages, including extended Healthcare coverage and immediate access to outplacement support,” Elhabashi says.
Elhabashi continues, “As part of this next phase, we will be combining Parcast and Gimlet into a renewed Spotify Studios operation that will continue to produce a wide range of high-impact originals, including Stolen, The Journal, Science Vs, Heavyweight, Serial Killers, and Conspiracy Theories. The Ringer will continue to build its unrivaled programming slate across Sports, Culture, and Tech.”
As for leadership, Julie McNamara, VP, head of Global Podcast Studios, will continue to oversee the Spotify Studios group. Liliana Kim remains in charge of current content for Spotify Studios alongside Liz Gateley, head of development. Bill Simmons will continue to serve as MD of The Ringer and head of podcast innovation and monetization
Spotify says it has now has 100 million podcast listeners.