A Sad Day

This is a very sad day for Pandora, and for me personally. Today we reduced our staff from 140 to 120 employees. Like virtually every company, Pandora is not immune to the challenges presented by the current economic turmoil. We are trying to react quickly and responsibly to the new environment.
We cherish our employees. We have painstakingly built a team that I am tremendously proud of – there’s not a person in our company who hasn’t contributed substantially to what we do, and who we are. The twenty folks we let go today were no exception.
I started this company nine years ago. I lived through some very tough times back in 2001-2002. But letting go of an employee will, for me at least, always be the most gut-wrenching thing there is. We tried our best today to treat these friends and colleagues with great understanding, and with as much financial support for their transition as we can afford.
There are tough times ahead for the economy, but our listenership is growing rapidly, the Internet radio royalty rate resolution seems finally near, and the explosion of mobile devices like the iPhone are opening up a world of opportunity for internet radio to expand off the desktop. Moreover, our ad sales are growing so well that, not only did we not make any reductions there, we need to continue to hire more.
It’s just hard to be excited about all that today.
Tim (Founder)

Pandora

The Pandora Team http://www.pandora.com/

110 thoughts on “A Sad Day

  1. hey hey,
    I love your stations. I cant tell you how many people i have sold on this great idea. I did have one thought. we were having a birthday party for my 3 year old and realized alot of our stations had fairly vulgar phases. I was wondering if there was a way to place a ‘no vulgar’ button on to a station. ?. just an idea.
    -dee

  2. Tim,
    It doesn’t appear that you have answered the question that has been asked on here emphatically many times–
    –>What can people do to help? What is better for Pandora, listeners buying subscriptions or hearing ads??!?!?!<<–
    Let us know. I just found your service today, and it is literally one of the most amazing things I’ve ever encountered. My wife and I joked it’s way too good to be true, and now after Googling around, it appears that may be the case!
    Folks, the NYT article being referenced in the comments on this blog is called
    “Even if Royalties for Web Radio Fall, Revenue Remains Elusive” By CLAIRE CAIN MILLER
    Published: October 26, 2008
    And here is a link

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/27/technology/internet/27radio.html?emc=eta1

    There is also an article in The Mercury News:
    “Lid May Be Closing On Pandora” By Janis Mara
    Article Launched: 11/06/2008
    Link Here:

    http://www.mercurynews.com/music/ci_10921273

    Tim, it seems your customers (this one included) are very passionate, why not tap into that and let us know
    How. Do. We. Help?

  3. So sad that any employee had to lose their jobs and yes times are hard and oh so tight but things can and will get better. i believe in speaking things into existence, if I could just get enough people to ride this belief then things could possibly happen faster. One thought, ride with me

  4. I just discovered Pandora in the last 2 weeks, and a number of people I know are just discovering it now. If you need to enhance your revenues to keep it going, it would be worth it to me to pay to keep Pandora going. There could be lots of ways to structure it, I think.

  5. Thanks for continued feedback, everyone.
    In response to the concerns about Pandora’s future, and what you can do. Let me first say that I am VERY optimistic that we’re going to resolve this. We’re not done, but we’re very close. So for now, sit tight. We’ll definitely let you know if/when we need your help. Believe me – we know how powerful our users are. It’s thanks to you that we’re going to beat this thing.
    So stay tuned…
    Cheers. Tim

  6. Tim,
    I’m sorry to hear about you employees. As an employer I fully understand the anguish. I wish you guys all the success you deserve for your had work.
    I’ve been a listener for over a year now and I think you service is great an arguably the best on the net. Please keep persevering.
    All the best, Greg

  7. my heart goes out to everyone at pandora,
    you all have taken the time to answer all my questions, turned me on too so many new styles of music, and above all you have all been friends. Though we haven’t ever meet you have all made me feel special, morethan just a listener..

  8. Sorry to hear about the hardship, going through the same thing as an employee myself. It sucks, but we will all get through it hopefully sooner rather than later! How much longer until Pandora is available for the LG Dare? Hopefully soon!!