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)


  1. Social Sound System
    October 16, 2008 at 3:34pm
    Shitty but what can you do... I'm one of September's numbers as well. At least you didn't shut down an entire office in Detroit using a blogpost like Tesla Motors did today!
  2. Leanne
    October 16, 2008 at 3:39pm
    So, if the rate resolution secures the future of Pandora's business model, will those employees be hired back? Just curious...
  3. Jonathan
    October 16, 2008 at 3:41pm
    Dude, that really sucks. Sorry to hear. Hang in there. I've been through so many RIF's in the past 10 years (lived through the first dot-bomb era). Love the product. Can't wait to get an iPhone (mainly so I can use Pandora on the go).
  4. Anne
    October 16, 2008 at 3:48pm
    Letting staff go, especially good people who work hard and are friend, is one of the hardest things a manager can do. It will be especially hard on the staff who remain. Selfishly, I'm glad so many of you are still there and that Pandora is still with us.
  5. KC
    October 16, 2008 at 3:50pm
    Maybe you should take down the "we're hiring" link.
  6. Jenifer
    October 16, 2008 at 4:00pm
    We listen everyday at work, and understand what you're going through. I have a lot of respect for the founder of the company to step-up and make a statement. These are tough times for everyone and I will continue to support Pandora.
  7. sean carter
    October 16, 2008 at 4:27pm
    I wasn't the only one laid off this week, i see. My ad firm, along with countless others are really feeling this pinch.
  8. Paul Russell
    October 16, 2008 at 5:41pm
    Leading a company through tough times is extremely difficult. I'm sorry to hear you are going through this. I know there are a lot of pandora fans like me that want to help pandora be successful. So my question is this. What can we do to help? Does signing up for subscriptions help pandora's costs or is it only provided for people that want to avoid advertising? Do you need us to make any more calls to congress? Is there something else we can do that will help? Let us know and I for one will be ready to help. Thanks for keeping Pandora going. You guys are awesome! Paul
  9. margy
    October 16, 2008 at 10:00pm
    i'm so sorry for everyone involved -- you included. i've been on both sides of the layoff conversation and it's always a very sad time. you have a wonderful idea and a great company and i wish you a big rebound soon.
  10. margy
    October 16, 2008 at 10:02pm
    oh yes -- and to echo paul, i'd pay to get pandora. don't underestimate the loyalty and enthusiasm of your listeners! we really want you guys to succeed.

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