Crypto hiring: Former Meta senior engineer joins Web3 chat network

Plus, layoffs come to a halt and DeFiance Capital’s head of growth departs

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Sabir Alizada left WhatsApp to become engineering lead at Trust Machines. The company is developing an application called Console, which is pitched as the decentralized answer to Discord. 

Alizada was a senior software engineer at WhatsApp, which is owned by Meta, for over three years. While there, Alizada worked on business features for the messaging app, including WhatsApp Flows, WhatsApp Pay to Merchant and WhatsApp Commerce, according to his LinkedIn. 

At Console, Alizada will be joining a team building a Web3 chat app marketed as a reason to “ditch Discord.” The app comes with features like wallet connectivity and token gating. 

Read more: Former Meta crypto exec plots course for Bitcoin’s transformation to global payment network

It isn’t the first time former Meta employees have ventured into Web3. Engineers who worked on the company’s Libra stablecoin went on to found the layer-1s Aptos and Sui

In a release accompanying the hire viewed by Blockworks, Alizada said, “decentralization in messaging, I believe, is not a trend but the future.” 

Crypto sees no reported December layoffs

Twenty crypto firms underwent layoffs in January, including Coinbase, DCG and Gemini, according to data from TrueUp. No crypto layoffs were reported in December. 

Read more: Coinbase lays off 950 staff, cuts operational costs by 25%

TrueUp shows Genesis undergoing layoffs in December, but the cited report refers to cuts that happened earlier.

Another crypto layoff aggregator shows a spike in layoffs in the months following the collapses of Terra and FTX in May and November 2022. This year, layoffs flared up in October when Chainalysis, Ledger and Yuga Labs all announced cuts, but have slowed down during November and December.

Other notable hiring news

  • DeFiance Capital’s head of portfolio growth Yeou Jie Goh left the investment firm for blockchain platform Chromia, where he will serve as head of the Asia-Pacific region. DeFiance Capital was incubated by now-defunct hedge fund Three Arrows Capital and has been a source of tension with Three Arrows’ liquidator.

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