Cratejoy sheds nearly half of workforce amid restructuring effort

Cratejoy, a startup that runs a marketplace for subscription businesses and helps founders launch and scale their own subscription box services, has laid off 18 members of its 43-person team.

The company’s co-founder and chief executive officer Amir Elaguizy confirmed the lay-offs to TechCrunch. He says the cuts are part of a restructuring effort to keep costs in line and that subscribers and merchants will not be impacted.

The startup has raised a total of $10 million to date from investors, including Charles River Ventures, SV Angel, Andreessen Horowitz, Maverick Capital, Start Fund and ACE Venture Fund. Cratejoy completed the Y Combinator accelerator program in the summer of 2013 alongside DoorDash, Le Tote and Bloom That, which itself recently hit pause on its on-demand flower service.

“This was a hard decision made by the leadership team to keep our costs in line,” Elaguizy told TechCrunch. “Whenever we’re forced to make hard staffing decisions it is difficult, and this reduction was no exception. We had to part ways with many very good and talented people.”

Elaguizy declined to elaborate on any other changes to the business.

Austin-based Cratejoy sells a curated collection of subscription boxes and helps entrepreneurs develop their own subscription box. It exists on the premise that the future of e-commerce is these packaged collections of goods delivered on a recurring basis.

For some time, venture capitalists were drinking the subscription box Kool-Aid, but those days appear to be over. Funding into subscription box startups, according to Crunchbase data, has dropped off significantly.

Cratejoy was founded in 2014 amid the subscription box funding boom. The same year it completed its $4 million Series A, Birchbox completed a $60 million round, Dollar Shave Club raised $13 million and Stitch Fix brought in $30 million. With 30 companies raising about $200 million, 2014 was the highest on record for investment in subscription box companies.

Last year, companies in the sector raised just $39.7 million across 20 deals.