Rosetta Stone Exits Remaining US Kiosks, to Cut 45 Full-Time, 200 Part-Time Employees
Rosetta Stone (NYSE: RST) announced today that it will close all 56 of its remaining kiosk locations in the U.S. as it accelerates a transition to cloud-based learning solutions. As part of the move, the company will reduce its headcount by approximately 45 full-time and 200 part-time employees. Over the past 18 months, Rosetta Stone has been intensifying its focus on online sales and digital downloads, and the discontinuation of its kiosks—located predominantly in malls and airports—advances its cloud-based business strategy.
“This is another step in the transformation of Rosetta Stone,” said President and Chief Executive Officer Steve Swad. “Not long ago, kiosks played a critical role in building our brand and distributing our products. But today, learners expect us to come to them via the cloud, and that's what we're doing. By meeting customers where they are, we are pursuing our vision of a world where anyone—anywhere, anytime—can learn using Rosetta Stone.”
The kiosk channel closure follows on the heels of Rosetta Stone's April 2 acquisition of Seattle-based Livemocha, which brings with it one of the world's largest online language-learning communities and a powerful, scalable technology platform. In March, the company opened new offices in Austin, TX and San Francisco, CA—two of the country's most prominent recruiting pools for high-tech employees—to reinvigorate its product development organization. Taken together, these actions signal that Rosetta Stone is leaning into the explosive growth of cloud-based learning.
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