Out of all the people losing their jobs at Spotify this week, the most significant one is Chief Financial Officer Paul Vogel. He’s been taking care of the company’s money matters since 2020, especially as it got into podcasts and audiobooks. But now, he’s leaving at the end of March 2024.
The CEO of Spotify, Daniel Ek, explained that they decided this because Vogel doesn’t have the right experience to help the company grow and meet the expectations of the market. They’re now looking for someone to take his place.
“Spotify has been changing its approach in the past two years to better match our spending with what the market expects. At the same time, we’re investing in big opportunities for growth. I’ve had many discussions with Paul about finding the right balance between these two goals. We’ve realized that Spotify is moving into a new phase, and we need a CFO with a different set of experiences. So, we’ve decided to go our separate ways. I want to thank Paul for his steady guidance in helping our business expand during a global pandemic and uncertain economic times,” said Ek in a statement released on Thursday evening. Vogel did not provide a statement.”
Spotify Cuts Jobs and CFO Resignation
After trying the patience of investors with various acquisitions and investments, Spotify is now concentrating on making a profit, whether it’s good or bad. A significant part of its original podcasting efforts has been closed down, including canceling its top two shows, Heavyweight and Stolen, this week. Around 1,500 employees from product, advertising, marketing, and content were laid off this week, which makes up 17% percent of the staff.
Vogel has been with Spotify for a long time, starting in 2016 as the head of FP&A, treasury, and investor relations before becoming CFO in 2020. Before joining Spotify, he worked as a managing director at Barclay’s and as an SVP at AllianceBernstein.
Before Thursday’s announcement, an SEC filing revealed that Vogel used 47,859 stock options on Tuesday and sold the shares at one of Spotify’s highest prices in two years. The sale amounted to $9.38 million.
While Vogel had exercised options and sold stock in March and September, this recent sale was notably larger than the previous ones. It’s unclear whether the stock sale was planned in advance or triggered by a specific stock price, as Spotify did not respond to requests for clarification on the matter.
Spotify is making big changes to make more money, letting go of 17% of its workers, including CFO Paul Vogel. The company is closing some podcasts and reorganizing. CEO Daniel Ek says they need a CFO with different experiences for the new direction. Vogel also sold a lot of stock recently. This shows a significant turning point for Spotify.