Aug. 10th, 2017
SoundCloud: On the Edge of No Return
SoundCloud is to Spotify as Myspace is to Facebook, and we all know how that turned out…
With over 40% of its staff laid off and the loss of a staggering $6 million a month in 2015 alone, SoundCloud is in grave financial turmoil.
Earlier this year claims were made that the Berlin-based company only had enough funds to survive another few months. But SoundCloud user/enthusiast, Chance the Rapper (who had gained fame from the online streaming service) refused to believe in the platform’s decline or altogether disappearance. Taking to Twitter to reassure his 5 million followers, Chance stated that he had spoken to co-founder, Alex Ljung, and SoundCloud was “here to stay.”
SoundCloud launched in 2008 as a small but eager community of indie artists who didn’t have to fear copyright laws when sharing their music. The service soon took off at a rapid rate. But raising the necessary millions in investments meant SoundCloud’s userbase needed to grow constantly and, unfortunately, this didn’t happen.
Many have said that SoundCloud’s fate was sealed when they introduced the “repost” feature and it was quickly “abused” by its artists.
2016 looked promising, with a paid subscription service under way and Twitter investing in the company in June. By September the potential that Spotify would buy SoundCloud even seemed likely. Yet by the end of the year, Spotify lost interest and SoundCloud was back at square one – stagnant as ever.
Post-layoffs, Ljung guaranteed that SoundCloud had a future as an independent company but his assurance seemed baseless to industry experts. Profitability had been an enduring struggle for SoundCloud from the get-go. So far, 2017 isn’t looking to be any more fruitful for the company, so we can only keep our fingers crossed for a prosperous future.