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Pandora's Streamlining Music to Atlanta's Ears

Internet Radio Service Will Expand in Midtown, Cut Jobs at Oakland HQ
February 1, 2018
Pandora's box in Atlanta is about to get bigger.

The Oakland-based music streaming service said late Wednesday it will expand its workforce in Atlanta as part of an organizational restructuring Pandora hopes will save the company $45 million annually. In other words, Atlanta's lower cost of living is appealing, and Pandora won't have to pay Atlanta employees what it pays people in the East Bay.

On Wednesday, the company laid off 5 percent of its workers as part of the restructuring, according to an 8-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Pandora will redeploy the money it saves by laying off workers to fund growth initiatives focused on increasing its audience and improving ways to monetize its operations.

While Pandora's presence in the Bay Area is shrinking, it soon will grow in Atlanta.

In April 2013, Pandora Media Inc. leased 11,000 square feet on the 15th floor at the BB&T Tower at 271 17th St. in Atlantic Station. The lease expires Nov. 30, 2018, according to CoStar information.

Atlanta provides "a significant opportunity to add instrumental talent in a region with lower costs than the company's headquarters," Pandora said. But Pandora has no plans to relocate the entire company to Atlanta at this point.

"Atlanta is a city with a rich history in music and a large pool for diverse tech talent that we can tap as we scale," Lynch said. "While we are committed to having Oakland remain our headquarters, we're excited to build on the great foundation of our awesome team there and expand our presence in Atlanta over time."

As Pandora restructures, it will focus its resources on ad-tech and audience development efforts, it said in the release.

Pandora Media started as Savage Beast Technologies in 2000, with the aim of allowing each listener to create his or her own radio station. Today, it is the largest music streaming service in the United States.

Tony Wilbert, Atlanta Market Reporter  CoStar Group   
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