Amazon is looking to downsize various divisions, with Prime Video & Twitch layoffs announced yesterday. Now a leaked email reveals the Audible division is impacted, too. No word yet if this extends to Amazon Music or not.
An internal email obtained by Business Insider reveals that 5% of the Audible workforce will be let go. The email is from Audible CEO Bob Carrigan, who writes to his team notifying them of the “tough decision to reduce roles within our organization. The five percent figure is quoted directly in the email.
When BI reached out for comment, Amazon declined to say anything. But the email to staff explains, “to position us for continued success in the coming year and into the future, given the increasingly challenging landscape we face, we have to take this difficult decision now.”
Amazon acquired Audible for $300 million in 2008 and has since dominated the audiobooks industry, branching out into podcast offerings in recent years. While Audible has mostly been given autonomy to run independently of Amazon’s policies, that appears to be changing as Amazon begins its belt-tightening.
Yesterday Digital Music News covered the announced layoffs at Prime Video and Twitch. Prime Video’s layoffs impacted “several hundred” individuals across the division, including the MGM Studio team. Meanwhile, live streaming service Twitch announced 500 jobs would be cut as the organization reorganizes as a smaller company.
It’s unclear if any of these cuts will extend to Amazon Music and beyond, as Spotify has pared its workforce three times in the last year. Podcasts paid off during the pandemic boom when everyone was stuck at home—but the industry has become saturated with content and it’s no longer the gold rush it was in 2020.
Audible struggled with this some too as it pivoted to offering podcasts to its listeners in an attempt to capture new audiences. Amazon as a whole has had massive layoffs across all of its divisions, starting in late 2022. An estimated 27,000 employees working under Amazon or a subsidiary have been impacted since these layoffs began in 2022.