Report: Canadian Crypto Exchange Coinsquare Lays Off 40 Employees

One of Canada’s top crypto exchanges, Coinsquare, is reportedly laying off almost 30 percent of its staff, including its chief financial officer (CFO) and chief operating officer (COO). The news was reported by Canadian startup and technology news platform BetaKit on Jan. 31.

Coinsquare did not return Cointelegraph’s request for comment or confirmation by press time.

Citing multiple sources, BetaKit estimates the total number of redundancies at around 40 team members — representing 27 percent of the company’s formerly 150-head workforce.

A LinkedIn post from Coinsquare’s head of talent, Martin Hauck, published yesterday, noted that “the ever-evolving digital currency/cryptocurrency space has been volatile and unpredictable,” and that Coinsquare is one of many industry firms being forced to make tough choices.

BetaKit notes that some of the exchange’s top-ranked employees — including COO Robert Mueller and CFO Ken Tsang — are among those to have had their contracts terminated. Both executives were reportedly hired around a year ago.

After the layoffs were reportedly announced to staff yesterday morning, Coinsquare CEO Cole Diamond conducted an interview with BetaKit. He said that despite the fresh redundancies, the firm had onboarded 23 new employees this year — 14 of which joined as a result of Coinsquare’s acquisition of blockchain-based loyalty rewards company Tipcoin.

Diamond stressed that unlike other Canadian exchanges, “Coinsquare is in absolutely no trouble, [but needs to] responsibly manage its resources” as:

“We’re in the most volatile market that you or I have ever seen. As a result, we’ve scaled up in the last 21 months from three people to a high of 150 people. We’ve decided to make some cutbacks to make sure we protect our strong position in the market.”

Diamond claimed the company’s balance sheet featured $40 million in company funds and assets, mostly in cash.

As reported, Coinsquare’s portfolio-management subsidiary launched two new exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) last fall — both pegged to the performance of indices based on stock issued by blockchain companies.

In December, Coinsquare expanded its platform to the European market. The company had also announced plans for a $120 million IPO on the TSX exchange, originally slated for last September.

Coinsquare is not alone in opting to reduce its head count to survive the crypto market slump; mining giant Bitmain, blockchain software firm ConsenSys and decentralized social network Steemit have all made significant cuts in recent months.

Founded in 2014, Coinsquare is currently ranked the 73rd largest exchange globally by adjusted daily trade volumes, seeing roughly $7.4 million in trades over the 24 hours before press time.