Machinima will cut 10 percent of its staff, the company announced on Wednesday. That marks the second time in the past year the company has reduced the size of its staff, as the company laid off 15 or 16 employees last December.
Machinima operates one of the largest networks of YouTube channels in the world and counts Google as a primary investor. It raised $35 million last March, and has often been cited as an example of a modern media company at its finest.
Yet over the past couple of years Machinima has watched rival networks Maker Studios and Fullscreen surpass its monthly audience — and raise millions in cash.
Machinima’s network still reaches more than 200 million viewers a month, but it has shifted its focus in search of more lucrative business opportunities. It aims to create more premium shows like the award-winning “Mortal Kombat: Legacy” and better monetize those shows by expanding its reach beyond YouTube.
Its strong following in the gamer community has also drawn the interest of Hollywood, studios, many of whom have teamed with Machinima to market high-profile movies (as Universal recently did with “Riddick”).
In a statement issued by a Machinima spokeswoman, the company said the staff reductions were prompted by a need to invest more money in programming and distribution.
“In connection with Machinima’s growth plan, the company is making an increased commitment to premium programming, its’ YouTube affiliate network, and multi-platform distribution,” the company said in a statement . “As a result of an increased need for investment in these areas, Machinima is eliminating positions representing approximately 10% of the company’s workforce equating to 22 of 206 employees. Over the next several months, Machinima will announce new programming and distribution initiatives that will advance the next phase of this strategic plan.”
Here are some of the tweets from former and departing staffers:
Today is my last day working for http://t.co/7o4KK8DF7F. Thank you Machinima and thank you to all of the Directors. It has been a pleasure.
– Anthony Rogers (@Shorewarz) September 18, 2013
To clarify – no longer working for Machinima effective today. Many others were also let go. Grateful for the time I had here. Moving on.
– Scott Fisher (@Aplfisher) September 18, 2013
Sorry to hear that many of my former employees at @Machinima_com were layed off today. They were vital to making that place what it is today
– Rob Jones (@stranger109) September 18, 2013