In September, Fortnite creator and Apple antagonist Epic Games laid off more than 800 staff members due to spending "way more money" than it earns. These layoffs represented 16% of the company’s entire workforce and sent enough of a shockwave rippling through the industry that CEO Tim Sweeney ultimately addressed the situation on-stage at Unreal Fest.
There, he assured that Epic has "stabilised" but some games will inevitably see a "degradation in quality".
To add to that, Epic forewarned of another 250 staff layoffs as part of its sales of Bandcamp and SuperAwesome.
Banished from Bandcamp
Epic Games acquired the online audio distribution platform Bandcamp in March 2022. 18 months later, when Epic announced its layoffs, the company also stated that it would divest, leaving approximately 240 Bandcamp employees in a temporary limbo as to their own fates.
Now, with the sale to Songtradr complete, those fates are sealed, with 50% of Bandcamp staff dismissed with six months’ severance while the other half will continue on through the platform's sale.
As for why Songtradr chose not to acquire Bandcamp with its full retinue, the B2B music platform stated: "Over the past few years the operating costs of Bandcamp have significantly increased. It required some adjustments to ensure a sustainable and healthy company that can serve its community of artists and fans. After a comprehensive evaluation, including the importance of roles for smooth business operations and pre-existing functions at Songtradr, 50% of Bandcamp employees have accepted offers to join Songtradr."
Kotaku also heard from a disgruntled former employee of Bandcamp, who said: "There’s no way Bandcamp will continue as Songtradr has promised. It’s just completely fucked up."
Epic is far from the only big name to have struggled this year, nor the only one to end up laying off employees. Only a few weeks ago, Roblox downsized its talent acquisition team despite its ongoing success as a premium metaverse platform. Even more recently, Team17 announced a "period of consultancy" ahead of a restructure, likely to result in significant layoffs with CEO Michael Pattison departing.