Robinhood cites crypto market crash in decision to lay off 23% of employees

Stock and crypto trading app Robinhood announced they would be laying off 23% of their staff: 780 people. The layoffs followed a prior round of layoffs in April, which saw 9% of their staff (~342 people) out of jobs.

Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev wrote, "Since that time, we have seen additional deterioration of the macro environment, with inflation at 40-year highs accompanied by a broad crypto market crash. This has further reduced customer trading activity and assets under custody. Last year, we staffed many of our operations functions under the assumption that the heightened retail engagement we had been seeing with the stock and crypto markets in the COVID era would persist into 2022."

The announcement came the same day that Robinhood was fined $30 million by the state of New York for insufficient anti-money laundering and cybersecurity protections in the crypto portions of their offering.

CoinFLEX cuts "significant number" of staff

CoinFLEX, a yield farming platform that stopped withdrawals in late June, announced they had made major staff cuts to reduce their cost base by 50–60%. "The intention is to remain right-sized for any entity considering a potential acquisition of or partnership opportunity with CoinFLEX," they wrote in a blog post.

Blockchain.com lays off 25% of its employees

The cryptocurrency exchange Blockchain.com announced they would be cutting 25% of their employees, or around 150 people. They attributed the decision to the crypto market conditions, as well as the need to compensate for financial losses—likely alluding to the $270 million loss they're facing due to a loan to the now-insolvent Three Arrows Capital crypto hedge fund.

Blockchain.com also announced that they would close their Argentina-based offices, cancel plans to hire in several countries, and cut executive salaries.

BlockFi offers employee buyouts to further reduce headcount one month after cutting 20% of staff

The cryptocurrency lender BlockFi is reportedly offering employees buyouts—sorry, a "voluntary separation program"—in an effort to reduce their headcount even further. Those employees receive 10 weeks of paid leave, 10 weeks of continued health insurance, and unemployment eligibility if they resign.

The move came only a month after BlockFi laid off 20% of their employees, or around 170 people. The company appears to be struggling to stay afloat, soliciting $400 million in loans from Sam Bankman-Fried's FTX crypto exchange and signing a deal with FTX that gives the exchange the opportunity to acquire them.

Gemini lays off second round of employees in less than two months

After laying off 10% of its workforce in the first week of June, Gemini has performed a second round of layoffs. The layoffs have not been announced externally, nor were they widely communicated internally, according to employees who spoke to TechCrunch. One employee said that 68 members, or 7% of the employee base, were no longer in the company Slack channel on Monday morning.

The week prior, an internal operating plan document was shared to the anonymous employee platform Blind, which outlined a plan that would reduce company headcount to around 800—a 15% reduction. The plan was taken down shortly after. Gemini co-founder Cameron Winklevoss wrote in a Slack message that the leak was "super lame", and wrote that "friendly reminder that Karma is the blockchain of the universe — an immutable ledger that keeps track of positive and negative behavior."

OpenSea NFT marketplace lays off 20% of employees

OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace, announced that they would be laying off around 20% of their employees, or around 60 people. CEO Devin Finzer blamed "crypto winter" for necessitating the decision, a common phrase that has been referenced by multiple CEOs who have announced layoffs in the past two months.

Cryptocurrency exchange Bitpanda announces layoffs, rescindment of offers

The Austrian cryptocurrency exchange Bitpanda joined the recent litany of crypto companies laying off employees. In an announcement to staff, later shared publicly, the company cited changing market sentiment and unsustainably fast hiring as reasons for the layoffs.

The company announced they would be "scal[ing] down to a target organisational size of about 730 people". The company seems to have had around 1,000 employees, which means they are laying off around a quarter of their workforce. They also announced they would be rescinding employment offers they had extended recently.

Vauld lays off 30% of workforce and slashes executive pay

The Peter Thiel- and Coinbase-backed Vauld cryptocurrency exchange laid off 30% of its 100–200 employees, reportedly due to falling prices, low trading volumes, and tax concerns. They also halved executive salaries and drew back on their marketing expenses and vendor contracts.

Almost a year earlier, in June 2021, Vauld raised $25 million in a Series A round led by Peter Thiel's Valar Ventures, which was also joined by Coinbase and Pantera Capital.

Bybit plans to cut 20–30% of its workforce

Bybit, a Dubai-based cryptocurrency exchange, is reportedly joining the group of crypto companies laying off employees amidst plummeting cryptocurrency markets. Journalist Colin Wu reported that Bybit plans to lay off about 20–30% of its 2,000 employees, or around 400–600 people.

Coinbase lays off 1,100 employees in 18% cut

Coinbase announced that they would be cutting 18% of their employees, amounting to 1,100 people. This announcement came only two weeks after they rescinded already-accepted job offers from some new employees, a move that itself came only two weeks after the company announced a hiring freeze. Coinbase has attributed their decisions to "current market conditions" and "crypto winter".

Coinbase broke the news to affected employees in a particularly cold way: by email, sent to employees' personal email accounts because they immediately cut access to employees' work accounts. "Given the number of employees who have access to sensitive customer information, it was unfortunately the only practical choice, to ensure not even a single person made a rash decision that harmed the business or themselves," wrote CEO Brian Armstrong in a message to employees that was subsequently published as a blog post.

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