Music streaming giant Spotify said Monday it will reduce the number of its employees by around 17% in a bid to cut costs amid “dramatically” slower economic growth.
Spotify in October posted a rare quarterly operating profit of 32 million euros, compared to a loss of 228 million for the same period a year earlier, on the back of 26% growth in active users for the third quarter.
“I realize that for many, a reduction of this size will feel surprisingly large given the recent positive earnings report and our performance,” chief executive Daniel Ek wrote in a letter to employees, which was seen by AFP.
He said that in 2020 and 2021, the company “took advantage of the opportunity presented by lower-cost capital and invested significantly in team expansion, content enhancement, marketing, and new verticals.”
“However, we now find ourselves in a very different environment. And despite our efforts to reduce costs this past year, our cost structure for where we need to be is still too big.”
Spotify has invested heavily since its launch to fuel growth with expansions into new markets and, in later years, exclusive content such as podcasts.
It has invested over one billion dollars into podcasts alone.
In 2017, the company had around 3,000 staff members, more than tripling the figure to around 9,800 at the end of 2022.
The company has never posted a full-year net profit and only occasionally quarterly profits despite its success in the online music market.