BlockFi – Lays off 20% workforce

BlockFi joins the layoff bandwagon. BlockFi- The cryptocurrency wallet & lending app has announced layoffs across the company on Monday.

In an announcement to the company staff by Zac & Flori (CEO & Co-Founder) on Monday the financial services company has announced its decision to lay off 20% of its workforce, Which is around 210 + employees.

The reductions seem to have it happened across the teams – Engineering, Operations, and marketing. The company just had about 150 employees at the end of 2020 and quickly grew to $850 employees during just the past 18 months.

Block 5 is a cryptocurrency wallet and an app that also lends and enables investors to buy, sell store borrow unearn interest on their crypto assets. Block 5 has also its own rewards credit card which lets users on rewards reward points when paid using crypto.

The company was recently valued at $3 billion after its series d round off $350mn led by Tiger global, Bane capital, and DST global.

Message from the Founders of BlockFI

We’ve been through several tough days at BlockFi in the past, but today is probably the hardest. Like many others in the Tech industry, we have been impacted by the dramatic shift in macroeconomic conditions worldwide. We are in the gut wrenching position of needing to reduce our headcount today. This is not a decision we take lightly and candidly is one that brings us great sadness. 

We are reducing our headcount by roughly 20% and the reduction impacts every team at the company. This decision was driven by market conditions that have had a negative impact on our growth rate and a rigorous review of our strategic priorities. 

Today is a painful day for BlockFi but more so for employees who we have to part ways with. We are doing everything in our power to treat all of our impacted colleagues with the empathy and compassion that they deserve. 

We know these folks are some of the brightest minds in crypto and fintech and are working to ensure they find a new opportunity when they’re ready. Impacted team members can opt in to include their contact information in a directory of people looking for new roles. Our People team will be connecting our former colleagues directly with companies that are hiring.

We want to provide context for how we got to this point and where we are heading from here.

Together, we started BlockFi nearly five years ago with an idea for one retail product, the crypto-backed loan. Since then, we have expanded our retail product suite to multiple product verticals across Earn, Invest, Borrow, and Pay, supporting over 650,000 clients globally. We also launched our Institutional business providing financing, trade execution and private client services to leading institutions globally.

BlockFi’s greatest strength has always been our team, and we have immense gratitude for all who have joined us for this journey. At the end of 2020, we had about 150 employees and since then grew to over 850 during the incredible growth of the crypto markets and our business. 

Since Q1 of 2022, the macroeconomic environment has shifted dramatically, sparking a dramatic pull back in equity and crypto markets. As a result, our number one goal has been to achieve profitability so that we can own our destiny as we navigate what many expect to be an extended global recession. We have been eliminating expenses throughout our business such as: 

  • Reducing marketing spend
  • Eliminating non-critical vendors 
  • Reducing executive compensation 
  • Slowing headcount growth

Unfortunately, after taking significant time to plan and consider, this is the action we now need to take to achieve our profitability goal.

For our remaining 600+ colleagues and our clients, partners and stakeholders who have supported us worldwide – we are steadfast in our commitment to ensure BlockFi is here for the long haul. Clients should not experience any material disruption to our platform, products or services; you will receive the same great service you have come to expect from BlockFi.

We know this is a hard day, but BlockFi will persevere. Our ambition and commitment remains the same: to provide crypto-powered financial services that accelerate prosperity worldwide. 

Zac and Flori

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