Melbourne cryptocurrency startup Banxa is losing 40% of its workforce amid the current digital asset crash and plummeting share price.
The fintech, founded in 2014 and listed in Canada on the Toronto Stock Exchange’s Venture Exchange in January 2021 (TSXV:BNXA).
Banxa claims to be “one of the fastest growing suppliers of fiat (cash) to web3 solutions in the digital asset industry”, but like digital currencies and the tech market in general, its share price has seen a decline in the past year.
Early backers include Alex Waislitz’s Thorney Investment Group and Sydney’s Alium Capital.
In April, the company reported March total transaction volume (TTV) of A$355 million, up 74% from 12 months earlier, and also added 13 new coins, including APE (ApeCoin), CAKE (PancakeSwap) and AXS (Axie Infinity). TTV for the first 9 months of FY22 grew 204% year-over-year to A$1,205 billion.
Banxa provides payment infrastructure and regulatory compliance to the world’s largest digital asset platforms. In addition to its base in Melbourne, it also has offices in the US and Asia, as well as Europe, with a second headquarters in Amsterdam.
It grew to about 250 employees, but they were last called to a meeting where CEO Holger Arians told shocked employees that the company had grown too fast and was consolidating operations to Australia and the Philippines, with about 100 employees laid off. .
In an email to staff, Arians said the company must “take decisive action now to reduce costs,” and while they had hoped the company could gradually adjust due to macro conditions, those changes accelerated.
The cuts at Banxa come as the broader crypto sector loses jobs this month.
Crypto.com will lay off 5% of its staff, while BlockFi will cut 20% of its staff. Coinbase is also cutting 1,100 positions, about 18% of its workforce.
Vienna-based digital investment platform Bitpanda told staff on Friday it will reduce its workforce from about 1,000 to 730.
The Winklevoss twins are cutting the staffing of their crypto exchange, Gemini, by 10%.
The job cuts at Banxa come in a month when fintech Brighte cut 15% of its team and Melbourne-based creative marketplace Envato announced it would cut 100 jobs worldwide.