San Francisco based tech news website Protocol closing shop.

Submitted by Mike on Tue, 11/15/2022

Tech news website Protocol situated in San Francisco will let 60 staff as the company is shutting down.
Protocol, Politico's sister publication, debuted in 2020.

Robert Allbritton, the owner at the time, wanted to transform tech reporting in the same way that Politico, which was established in 2007, transformed the Washington, D.C., media scene.

Axel Springer, a German media powerhouse, acquired Protocol and Politico for more than $1 billion just over a year ago.

The pandemic made Protocol’s early days difficult, and some staff were laid off or left soon after it launched. But it recovered and expanded again.

Protocol’s closure comes as the tech sector that it covers endures heavy layoffs, including at Meta, Twitter and Stripe. Ad spending has fallen this year, hitting both tech giants and media organizations.

“Given the increasing importance of Politico’s technology coverage to our readers and our plans to invest and expand further into that space, we ultimately concluded that it did not make sense to continue operating Protocol as a standalone brand and business within PMG and have started the process of winding it down by the end of the year,” Politico Media Group CEO Goli Sheikholeslami wrote in a memo to staff shared with The San Fansisco Chronicle.

“We see great opportunity in technology coverage at Politico and want to own the conversation on the future of tech in the same way we do politics,” she Goli Sheikholeslami wrote.

According to the business, the choice was made during a six-month planning process to create a sustainable future.
Business Insider and Morning Brew are also owned by Axel Springer.