Jan 26, 2021 - Technology

Exclusive: Discord hires teams from two startups in bid to diversify audience

Illustration of a repeating pattern of computers with the Discord logo displayed on the screen.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Online discussion service Discord plans to announce today it has hired the teams behind two startups as it seeks to further diversify its audience beyond gamers.

Why it matters: The two "acquihires" are designed to both help keep existing Discord users more engaged and help make the service more appealing to two lucrative constituencies — brands and content creators.


  • Discord is hiring the nine people behind Byte, which focuses on content creators, and the six people behind Zyper, which works with brands.
  • Discord isn't buying the assets of either company and plans to redirect the staff of each to help Discord broaden the reach of its own core service.

The big picture: Discord has pledged to avoid both advertising and collecting user data, making outreach to brands and content creators important to the company's ability to grow profitably.

What they're saying: Discord COO Mak Azadi told Axios that the moves are designed to help the company staff up more rapidly than it could through traditional hiring.

  • "2020 was a big year for Discord," Azadi said. "And in order to build on this momentum, we have to hire a lot of awesome people this year."

Go deeper: Discord looks to grow beyond its gaming roots

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