Listen.com Layoffs

Listen.com (www.listen.com) laid off 25 percent of its staff on Thursday, in an attempt to reach profitability by next year. The 42 employees shown the door were given severance packages.

The company attributes the layoffs to the re-focusing of its efforts from a consumer-based business, to that of syndication and services.

"The employees leaving Listen.com all made tremendous contributions to our growth and success. The realities of the market, the changes in our business model and the need to minimize the time it takes to reach profitability all factored into this decision," said Rob Reid, Listen.com CEO and founder in a statement.

In November, Listen launched Listen Radio, as the new face of WiredPlanet, which was acquired by Listen in September 2000. Listen is syndicating Listen Radio to sites looking to add streaming audio capabilities. It is unclear whether the current round of layoffs is related to the WiredPlanet acquisition.

Sean Ryan, president and CEO of Listen, stated that its customers were interested in other music-related services and the acquisition of Wired Planet will enable Listen to offer a suite of services to other sites -- to provide essentially a music portal in a box.

Listen was hoping to add Scour's peer-to-peer technology to its box of goodies, but was out-bid by CenterSpan at the auction in December.

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