Netflix on Thursday began a round of cost-cutting by eliminating an undisclosed number of marketing-related jobs, according to several people who said they were laid off.
The reductions come a week after Netflix reported its first subscriber loss in more than a decade. The Los Gatos, Calif.-based streaming service lost 200,000 subscribers in the first quarter and expects to lose even more in the current quarter, a disclosure that rattled investors and highlighted the mounting competitive pressure Netflix faces.
Some of the laid-off people said they worked on Tudum, a pop culture website that markets Netflix programs.
Netflix cited several reasons for the subscriber loss, including rising competition and password sharing. Executives said they would consider a lower-priced option with ads.
Netflix launched the Tudum website last December, named after the sound that plays when a Netflix program starts. It was meant to be a “backstage pass that lets you dig deeper into the Netflix films, series and stars you love!” the company said then.
Say hello to Tudum — a backstage pass that lets you dig deeper into the Netflix films, series, and stars you love! It’s still early days but you can expect exclusive interviews, behind-the-scenes videos, bonus features, and more. Check it out https://t.co/sYnbZ6pTzF pic.twitter.com/WtCCAF3B9u
— Netflix (@netflix)
Netflix declined to disclose how many jobs were cut, but said that “our fan website Tudum is an important priority for the company.”
Some of the laid-off people said they had only been working for Netflix for less than a year.
“Netflix recruited me seven months ago only to lay me and a bunch of other talented people off today,” wrote Evette Dionne, a former Netflix editorial and publishing manager on Twitter.
“Is anyone hiring?” wrote Josh Terry, who worked on Tudum. “Netflix just laid off my team (my job included).”
Former Netflix Chief Marketing Officer Bozoma Saint John had been a big supporter of Tudum when it launched.
“Now, Netflix is a part of the cultural zeitgeist, and what makes my job so exciting is that through the work we do, I get to constantly connect with fans all over the world through their favorite shows and movies,” Saint John wrote in a blog post in December. “So I’m excited to introduce Tudum for fans to dive deeper into the stories they love, fuel their obsessions and start new conversations.”
Saint John left Netflix earlier this year after serving less than two years in her role.