Earlier this month, SoundCloud made some drastic cost-cutting measures, slashing 173 staff members, and closing its offices in London and San Francisco.

Rather than see all that talent absorbed into other companies and their culture, Damian Bradfield, the founder of WeTransfer, sent each of those 173 ex-staff members an offer of a $10,000 cash injection in order to stop looking for new jobs, and instead to try and build something as innovative as SoundCloud.

The idea came to Bradfield during a talk at the Tech Open Air Conference in Berlin. “What if each and every one of them had been offered ten thousand dollars to refrain from getting a job?”, he proposed. “To leave and start something. To leave and start working on the new future of music, whatever that might be.”

“SoundCloud has always been the challenger”, he continued. “Look what they’ve achieved: they courted, vetted, groomed and trained these 173 people who specialise in music, technology and innovation. It seems sacrilegious to just let them go out and get regular jobs. We desperately need innovation. We need challengers.”

 After this statement, Bradfield decided to put his money where his mouth was, and emailed those 173 ex-staffers with this very proposition – “ not as a loan or an investment but a gift”, he stresses.

Bradfield sent the below letter to these ex-staffers.