Once the hottest new social platform to emerge, Clubhouse is now ‘resetting’ with a 50% employee reduction, less than a year after its last round of job cuts.
The once-booming social audio platform Clubhouse has laid off more than half of its remaining staff, a decision the startup’s co-founders made in response to changing customer habits and remote-work complexities in a post-COVID world, according to their blog post. Affected employees will receive severance packages and continued healthcare coverage for the next few months.
“As the world has opened up post-COVID, it’s become harder for many people to find their friends on Clubhouse and to fit long conversations into their daily lives. To find its role in the world, the product needs to evolve,” writes Clubhouse co-founder Paul Davison.
“It’s difficult for us to communicate the strategy to cross-functional teams when it’s evolving by 1% each day or to make quick changes when each surface is owned by a different product squad. Being remote has made this especially challenging for us.”
The new layoffs come less than a year after the company, once valued at $4 billion by its investors, laid off some of its staff amid “restructuring” efforts. Following those layoffs, the company told TechCrunch that Clubhouse had close to 100 employees; the latest job cuts reduced that number to less than 50.
“The world needs what Clubhouse is building — a better way for all of us to hear our friends’ voices, have more meaningful conversations, and feel connected to the people around us,” the company’s co-founders write. “We have a clear vision for what Clubhouse 2.0 looks like, and we believe that with a smaller, leaner team, we will be able to iterate faster on the details, build the right product, and honor our teammates who helped us get here.”
Interestingly, Clubhouse’s co-founders focused on complexities arising from overhiring and a remote work environment rather than citing the economy when announcing the layoffs. Clubhouse seems concerned with building a product people will continue to want as the company sees the hype surrounding its concept die down. Meanwhile, Spotify has folded its live audio service into its main app.