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Robinhood, Coinbase and Gemini: Crypto winter cost more than 3,700 jobs — here’s who’s laying off

Robinhood, Coinbase and Gemini: Crypto winter cost more than 3,700 jobs — here's who's laying off

Crypto companies are still reeling from the brutal market crash during the second quarter, triggered by the implosion of stablecoin terraUSD and its counterpart cryptocurrency luna.

Just a few months earlier, financial professionals were flocking from the City of London and Wall Street to cryptoland. Now companies have been forced to cut jobs in an attempt to cut costs, and even some of the biggest players in the industry, including Coinbase, have been hit hard.

Since May, the number of layoffs has been steadily increasing and currently stands at more than 3,700, according to Financial news calculations from public and private statements. Here is who is reducing the number of employees and why.

Robinhood – 1000 jobs

Robinhood, a trading platform that has an extensive crypto subsidiary, said it will lay off nearly a quarter of its staff, around 780 workers, on August 2. It was Robinhood’s second round of job cuts for 2022, bringing the total number of layoffs to more than 1,000.

“Last year, we hired many of our operational functions under the assumption that increased retail engagement … would continue through 2022,” CEO Vlad Tenev said. “As CEO, I have approved and taken responsibility for our ambitious recruitment trajectory – this is up to me.”

Blockchain.com – 150 jobs

Crypto exchange Blockchain.com confirmed on July 21 that it is laying off a quarter of its workforce, including those in the US and UK.

It also canceled plans to expand into several countries and closed its offices in Argentina.

The company was a creditor of the failed crypto hedge fund ThreeArrowsCapital, to which it lent more than $300 million.

Celsius – 150 jobs

Celsius cut 150 jobs as it struggled with a liquidity crisis. A source in the crypto exchange confirmed the cancellation of the deals Financial news 4th of July.

The crypto exchange has since filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and owed users $4.7 billion as of July 19.

READ Crypto company Celsius is on the verge of bankruptcy — here’s what you need to know

Coinbase – 1100 jobs

Coinbase said it would lay off 18% of its workforce on June 14, about 1,100 people. CEO Brian Armstrong blamed economic conditions, adding that the company grew “too fast” during the 2021 crypto bull run.

At the beginning of last year, Coinbase had 1,250 employees. It grew to nearly 6,000 by the end of the first quarter of 2022. Shares in the company are down more than 70% this year.

The pain may not be over for Coinbase. Goldman Sachs wrote in a research note on June 27 that the stock market may have to cut even more deals to cut overhead costs.

Gemini – 168 jobs

Another exchange, Gemini, announced that it was cutting 10% of its workforce on June 2. The company has about 1,000 employees, meaning about 100 would likely be affected.

Then on July 18, a further 7% of its remaining workers were reportedly hit with a second round of cuts, according to TechCrunch.

A source told the news outlet that about 68 people were told they were being fired on Gemini’s company-wide Slack channel. Financial news reached out to Gemini for comment.

Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss creators of Gemini

Getty Images

BlockFi – 170 jobs

Lender BlockFi said it will lay off 20% of its 850-person workforce, or 170 employees, on June 13.

CEO Zac Prince chirped that it was hit by a “dramatic change in macroeconomic conditions”, which had a “negative impact” on growth.

Crypto.com – 260 jobs

Crypto.com CEO Kris Marszalek he said on June 10 that they will lay off about 5% of their workforce, about 260 jobs.

The announcement comes seven months after the company spent $700 million to rebrand the Staples Center, a major sports venue in Los Angeles, into the Crypto.com Arena.

OpenSea – 60 jobs

Non-fungible token marketplace OpenSea announced on July 14 that it has laid off about 20% of its workforce, nearly 60 employees.

IN twitterCEO Devin Finzer said, “We need to prepare the company for the possibility of a prolonged downturn.”

Bitpanda – 270 jobs

Austrian crypto-trading platform Bitpanda said on June 24 that it was cutting its workforce to 730, down from about 1,000.

The Peter Thiel-backed company wrote in a blog post: “Looking back now, we realize that our hiring pace was not sustainable. That was a mistake.”

Buenbit – 80 jobs

Argentinian crypto exchange Buenbit lay off 45% of their employees on May 23, saying that the new number of employees is about 100 people. This implies the dismissal of around 80 jobs.

Ignite – 50 jobs

Ignite, the company behind the Cosmos blockchain ecosystem, cut about 50 jobs on July 1, according to news Coindesk.

Banxa – 70 jobs

Australian crypto exchange Banxa cut at least 70 jobs on June 27, equating to around 30% of its workforce, according to Australian Financial Review.

“Banxa must take decisive steps now to reduce costs, otherwise our company will not be able to succeed in the long term,” CEO Holger Arians reportedly said in a letter to employees. The cuts included Banxa’s European managing director, Jan Lorenzo.

Mercado Bitcoin – 86 jobs

2TM, the Softbank-backed holding company for Brazil’s Mercado Bitcoin exchange, said it cut at least 86 jobs on June 3.

“The changing global financial landscape, rising interest rates and inflation are having a major impact on technology-based companies,” 2TM said in a statement.

Bitso – 80 jobs

Another Brazilian crypto exchange, Bitso, also laid off 80 people on May 26, according to a statement. The reduction was about 45% of the staff.

Bullish.com – 30 jobs

Crypto exchange Bullish.com reportedly laid off just under 30 people on July 5, according to crypto news City quarter, district.

The Cayman Islands-based company employed 390 people, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission in late June.

Compass Mining – 12 jobs

On July 7, Compass Mining laid off 15% of its workforce – about 12 people – its co-founders said in a statement.

The crypto-mining company said it grew too fast, adding that it will reassess its strategy going forward.

To contact the author of this story with feedback or updates, please email Alex Daniel

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