Crypto Firm ShapeShift Lays Off 37 Employees

Announcements, News | January 9, 2019 By:

Crypto exchange ShapeShift has announced that one-third of its staff have been laid off due to the ongoing crypto bear market.

In a blog post titled “Overcoming ShapeShift’s Crypto Winter and the Path Ahead,” ShapeShift founder and CEO and Erik Voorhees said that the company has laid off 37 of its employees. Voorhees attributed the reduction to the “latest crypto winter.”

“Crypto, like the moon we strive toward, is a harsh mistress,” Voorhees said. “We ride high and fast during the ascents, growing at rates unseen almost anywhere else in the business world (ShapeShift grew 3,000% in 2017). And when the markets turn, the crypto recession is similarly dramatic and severe. None of it surprises those who have been through these cycles. But even with that experience, navigating these tumultuous seas is a continual lesson in humility.”

According to the ShapeShift CEO, the heavy exposure of the company assets to cryptocurrency is the “greatest and worst financial decision” the company has ever made.

“Much of our balance sheet is comprised of them. We accept the volatility, we accept the risk,” Voorhees said. “And our proclivity to attach our own fate to that of the crypto market is not altered by the recent pain.”

He also revealed that during 2018, the company “got hit from four sides.” These include people and structural issues, legal issues, customer issues and financial issues.

“The confluence of these issues combined with our own lack of product focus that resulted in today’s layoff,” Voorhees said. “2018 marked a rough year. While this new one starts upon some painful reorganization, we’re encouraged and hopeful for 2019.”