Spotify has shut down Studio 4, its internal podcast studio group, a move that will result in as many as 15 staffers being laid off or redeployed into other divisions.
A source familiar with the situation confirmed the closure of Spotify Studios’ Studio 4, first reported by tech site The Verge. Asked for an official statement, a Spotify rep declined to comment.
The in-house podcast studio, referred to inside the company as Studio 4, was an arm of Spotify’s original podcast content operations, alongside the audio streamer’s trio of acquired studios: Gimlet, Parcast and The Ringer. Studio 4 was like a “junk drawer” for projects that didn’t fit in elsewhere, a former Spotify employee told the Verge.
How are will they restructure?
The group had about 15 full-time staffers. Some are being moved into or offered positions with Gimlet, Parcast or The Ringer; others are being pink-slipped in the restructuring.
Julie McNamara, the former Paramount Plus programming boss who recently joined Spotify as head of U.S. studios and video, announced the shutdown of Studio 4 in a memo to employees. By shutting down the in-house studio group, Spotify will be able to “move faster and make more significant progress and facilitate more effective collaboration across our organization,” according to McNamara’s memo.
What did they produce?
Spotify’s Studio 4 produced a slate of podcasts including “Dope Labs,” “Dissect,” “Infamous,” “LOUD: The History of Reggaeton,” “We Said What We Said,” “Nosy Neighbors,” “Complex Subject,” “Bandsplain” and “Can We Be Friends?” The studio also produced shows including “Spotify: Discover This” and “Spotify: Mic Check” to highlight content trends, artists and creators on the streaming service.
Among the Spotify employees affected by the move was Gina Delvac, the L.A.-based head of Studio 4, who will transition into a consulting role for the company. Delvac is also the founding producer of the long-running podcast show “Call Your Girlfriend,” according to her website.
Spotify has made podcasts a major strategic priority, investing hundreds of millions in acquiring content studios and technology companies to support the push. The company has inked exclusive podcast distribution deals as well, including a multiyear pact for “The Joe Rogan Experience,” reportedly worth more than $100 million, and Alex Cooper’s “Call Her Daddy,” said to be for more than $60 million over three years.