Sonos laid off an unspecified number of employees and is redirecting resources to bring voice control and enhanced streaming capabilities to its wireless multiroom-audio products, CEO John MacFarlane announced in a blog post.
He cited the success of Amazon’s Echo tabletop speaker, which is equipped with voice control, and the music industry’s accelerated shift to paid streaming over downloads.
Sonos, which is partially owned by KKR, is “committed to running a sustainable, profitable business so that we can fund innovation in these and other areas for decades to come,” MacFarlane said.
“We’re not chasing short-term gains or answering to impatient investors,” he said. “Rather, we’re making a decision to substantially and confidently increase our investment in the future of music.”
He added, “The short term – and very difficult – consequence of this decision is we’ve had to make some changes to our team.” The company is “in the process of letting go of some Sonos employees who have played important roles [in the company].”
The changes come at a time when analysts see growth slowing in the wireless-speaker market as more companies enter the market.