TechCrunch Is Shuttering Its Subscription Product and Laying Off Staff


Technology publisher TechCrunch laid off around eight staff members Monday, part of a larger restructuring at the title as it seeks to refocus its coverage around the investors, founders and startups of Silicon Valley, according to an internal memo obtained by ADWEEK.

The publisher also plans to wind down its paid subscription product, TC+, as part of this effort, editor in chief Connie Loizos told staff. 

“We’ll be sunsetting the TechCrunch+ subscription product in the coming weeks and will refocus our talented writers and editors on strengthening our core product,” Loizos wrote. “Building around two businesses hasn’t allowed us to focus where we can win.”

The layoffs come amid a wave of cuts sweeping the media industry. In the past two weeks, publishers including Business Insider, Sports Illustrated, Forbes, Time and the Los Angeles Times have all reduced their headcounts.

Yahoo, which owns TechCrunch, has undergone cost-cutting of its own. The private-equity-owned company pledged to cut 1,000 jobs last year, and it has scaled back its advertising technology footprint.

TechCrunch first launched its subscription product, then called ExtraCrunch, in 2019, before rebranding it to TC+ in 2021. 

TC+ subscriptions cost $15 per month or $99 per year, but the publisher has never shared publicly how many subscribers the program has. In September 2022, TC+ had grown 142% year over year, and its revenue had increased 82% in the same period.

The decision to sunset TC+ follows on the heels of a broader trend in the subscriptions space, as shifting economic conditions have prompted publishers to reevaluate how they balance advertising and reader revenue initiatives.

Time and Quartz both ended their digital subscription programs in recent years, while Business Insider and Gannett have loosened their paywalls to make more content widely accessible. 

TechCrunch did not respond to a request for comment.

Reorienting TechCrunch

The layoffs at TechCrunch affected eight staff members and were split equally between editorial and business operations, according to two people familiar with the situation.

Affected editorial staff include managing editors Darrell Etherington and Matt Burns, as well as reporters Morgan Sung and Harri Weber. TechCrunch has a newsroom of around 30, according to a source.

As part of the cuts, the publisher plans to implement several changes in its editorial strategy, according to the memo sent by Loizos.

It will now lean more heavily into original reporting and content, as well as sponsored posts, according to Loizos. Going forward, it will no longer accept guest contributions. 

“In more recent years, we’ve accepted guest contributions to scale the work of our TechCrunch+ colleagues, but without TechCrunch+, we believe it is the right time to reposition our content strategy to make the most of our exceedingly valuable real estate,” Loizos wrote.

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