Melbourne cryptocurrency startup Banxa is shedding 30% of its staff amid the current digital assets crash and a plunging 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 fiat (cash) to Web3 solutions providers in the digital asset industry”, but like digital currencies and the tech market more broadly, has seen its share price plummet over the past year.
Its early-stage backers include Alex Waislitz’s Thorney Investment Group and Sydney’s Alium Capital.
In April, the company reported its March quarter Total Transaction Volume (TTV) of A$355 million, a rise of 74% on 12 months earlier, also adding 13 new coins including APE (ApeCoin), CAKE (PancakeSwap) and AXS (Axie Infinity). TTV for the first 9 months of FY22 grew by 204% year on year to A$1.205 billion.
Banxa provides payments infrastructure and regulatory compliance to the world’s largest digital asset platforms. Alongside the Melbourne base, it also has offices in the USA, and Asia, as well as Europe, with a second HQ in Amsterdam.
It grew to around 250 staff, but they were called to meeting last where were CEO Holger Arians told shell-shocked workers that the business had grown to quickly and would consolidate operations to Australia and the Philippines.
Alongside 30% of full-time employees going, the business has also reduced its use of contractors.
In email to staff, Arians said the business “must take decisive actions to reduce costs now” and while they’d hoped to make gradual adjustments to the business by macro conditions accelerated those changes.
A company spokesperson told Startup Daily Banxa has a long history and strong balance sheet.
“As a leaner, more focused company, Banxa can better prioritise higher margins and profitability in the face of industry headwinds,” he said.
“Banxa’s extensive payment rails and compliance infrastructure is increasingly valuable to creators and platforms in web2 and web3.
“Banxa is also a veteran company of multiple industry cycles, its financial performance is available to the public, and its balance sheet is strong.”
The cuts at Banxa come as the broader crypto sector sheds jobs this month.
Crypto.com is shedding 5% of its staff, while BlockFi will cut 20% of its staff. Coinbase is also cutting 1,100 roles, around or 18% of its workforce.
Vienna-based digital investment platform Bitpanda told staff on Friday that it will reduce its headcount from around 1000 to 730.
The Winklevoss twins are making a 10% reduction to staffing at their crypto exchange, Gemini.
The job cuts at Banxa come in a month where fintech Brighte cut 15% of its team and Melbourne-based creative marketplace Envato announced it would shed 100 jobs globally.
- Editor’s note: This story has been amended from initially saying a 40% staffing reduction, which included contractors, to 30% of full-time staff being made redundant.