Photo Credit: Native Instruments

Photo Credit: Native Instruments

Native Instruments’ Traktor is one of the most popular DJ software suites in the world. But many former employees have less than stellar reviews.

Back in July Native Instruments released Traktor Pro 3.2 for DJs to have better harmonic mixing. But many DJs and enthusiasts were more interested in talking about the key accuracy of the software.

Amid the talk about key accuracy for the software surfaced a rumor of layoffs at Native Instruments.

Specifically, one commenter cited hearing a rumor that the entire hardware division was laid off. A cursory glance at the Glassdoor listings for the last three months paint a grim picture of disgruntled employees.

One post says that all innovative projects got canceled. The management behind the company was blamed, with road maps changing on a weekly basis. Another described a series of mass layoffs in the last two years. That review cited at least 30 people in the US let go in 2018 and 20 people in Germany in 2019.

Native Instruments is a private company, so it’s difficult to ascertain how things are going financially. The company itself has two legal entities. The operating company behind it is NI GmbH and the holding company is NI Holding GmbH. Profit from the operating company is siphoned off to the holding company each year.

The last filing for both companies was December 31, 2017. That’s right after a $50 million investment injection. Looking at revenue reports that are available through the German Federal Register, we can paint a clearer picture.

It appears as though NI generated €68 million ($75M USD) and about €19 million ($21M) in other operating income. Total revenues for NI were only €88.2 million ($97M) and NI generated €84.6 million in expenses. That means NI only turned €3.6 million ($3.3M) in profit. That’s a severe drop compared to profits reported in 2016 and 2015.

Rumors swirling about entire teams being laid off and the grim profit picture from 2017 doesn’t look good. While Native Instruments isn’t bleeding money, it seems like the execs are in panic mode.