The three co-founders of Songza, a music curation startup acquired by Google in 2014, have left YouTube Music, Variety has learned. Former Songza CEO Elias Roman, former chief product officer Elliott Breece and former chief operating officer Peter Asbill all quietly transitioned to new positions at Google’s startup incubator Area 120 in March.
A YouTube Music spokesperson confirmed the departure, but said that the YouTube Music team was otherwise intact, with T. Jay Fowler continuing to lead product for Google’s music service.
Roman, Asbill and Breece all joined Google when the company acquired Songza in July of 2014. Following the acquisition, they all worked on Google Play Music, bringing curation and other features that Songza was known for to the service.
More recently, the trio had been working on YouTube Music, where Roman served as the lead product manager. Google plans to eventually replace Google Play Music with YouTube Music, but hasn’t announced any timing for this transition. The company has said that it would give Google Play Music subscribers the time and tools they need to move their collections to YouTube Music once the transition date is officially announced.
In anticipation of the shut-down, Google already shuttered the Google Play artist hub at the end of April. The artist hub had allowed independent musicians to directly upload their tracks to Google Play Music and the Play Store.
At Area 120, the three co-founders are apparently working on something completely unrelated to music, with Roman stating on Linkedin that their new project was focused on “building products to increase financial security for low income households in American cities.“