In a significant blow to Spotify, the company incurred a financial loss of £34 million as part of a decision to terminate several unsuccessful deals, including one with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

Spotify takes £34m hit as Meghan Markle and Prince Harry axed in cull of disastrous deals
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Spotify has incurred a loss of £34 million due to the termination of unsuccessful podcast deals. One such deal was the lucrative contract with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, which was terminated last month. The streaming service attributed the loss to write-offs and contract termination costs associated with the rationalization of their podcast content portfolio. Spotify CEO, Daniel Ek, stated that the company is stepping away from deals and relationships that have not been successful. The company’s heavy investment in podcasts has not yielded financial success, leading to job cuts in June. In its second round of redundancies this year, Spotify cut 200 jobs from its podcast business as it reorganizes that side of its operations. This follows a previous announcement to reduce its headcount by six percent, resulting in the axing of 600 jobs. Despite having over four million titles in its podcast business, Spotify’s gross margins have been eroded by the £800 million investment made in the sector. In addition, the company spent £162 million on securing Joe Rogan’s podcast on a multi-year deal. Dawn Ostroff, the individual responsible for negotiating Meghan and Harry’s Spotify deal, left the company in January. Ek confirmed that Ostroff, the chief content and advertising officer, decided to depart from Spotify. Meghan Markle released a podcast series in 2022 titled Archetypes, which consisted of 12 episodes featuring guest appearances from Serena Williams, Mariah Carey, and Paris Hilton. However, the series failed to meet expectations and left executives disappointed.

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