Warner Music to Lay Off 600 Staffers by Fall as Company Exits Digital Media, Including Uproxx

Warner Music is going to offload its owned and operated digital media, including Uproxx, CEO Robert Kyncl told staff in a memo sent Wednesday, the day before the company releases its earnings report.

The biggest percentage of the layoffs will affect the company’s owned and operated media properties, including entertainment websites Uproxx and HipHopDX.

In his memo to staffers Kyncl wrote, “These are dynamic platforms, but they operate outside our core responsibilities to our roster.” The two sites are being eyed for potential sale, while the CEO has decided to “wind down the podcasting brand Interval Presents and social media publisher IMGN.”

He continued, “This is a pivotal moment in the evolution of this great company,” and that he intends to “double down on our core business.”

Kyncl revealed some numbers early, including that the company grew 11% in normalized revenue over the last quarter, but that the company has to “make thoughtful choices about where we put our people, resources, and capital.”

“So, as part of that plan, we’ll be realizing approximately $200 million in annualized cost savings by the end of September 2025. The majority of these savings will be reinvested, putting more money behind the music,” he wrote.

“Our plan includes reducing our workforce by approximately 10%, or 600 people – the majority of which will relate to our Owned & Operated media properties, corporate and various support functions,” he said.

He added, “We’ve already begun to inform many of the impacted employees, and the vast majority will be notified by the end of September 2024.” He stated that he knows the news is “unsettling,” but that the company will be “moving as thoughtfully and respectfully as possible, so you have the critical information you need, and we’ll support you through this transition.”

The company’s last layoff was in March 2023, shortly after the former YouTube exec was named CEO in January. At the time, the layoffs affected 4% of staff, approximately 270 employees.

Variety first reported this story.

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