Plex laid off 37 people on Monday, a figure that represents more than 20 percent of the company’s workforce, according to a Slack post from CEO Keith Valory obtained by The edge. The layoffs affect “every department,” Valory wrote.
Plex offers a popular media server app that allows people to upload and stream their own content, but in recent years there has been a lot of betting on adding free ad-supported (FAST) movies and shows and live TV. But like many others in streaming, it seems that Plex has found that it can be difficult to make money in the business right now.
Plex’s ad business has been “significantly impacted” by the downturn in global ad markets, Valory said, and “unfortunately, we can’t know how long ad markets and prices will remain depressed and volatile.” Plex has decided to try to get its budget back to cash flow positive over the next 18 months, but “the only way to become profitable under these constraints is to significantly reduce our personnel costs,” Valory said.
The company will restructure under four main product areas and “a few shared services”. It’s also some additional internal changes, including re-prioritizing product roadmaps and reducing marketing spend.
Plex did not immediately respond to a request for comment. We found some posts on Linkedin discussing the recent layoffs, including a former UX strategist and a former backend software engineer for the company. The company also went through a round of layoffs earlier this year, according to a LinkedIn post from a former account executive.