From $1.5B to $0, Crypto Payments Platform Wyre Shuts Down

Wyre will be terminating services in January after a failed acquisition with Bolt in September


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Crypto payments and infrastructure provider company Wyre is shutting down, months after Bolt Financial scrapped a $1.5 billion deal to buy the firm.

Wyre was first founded in 2013 by Michael Dunworth and Ioannis Giannaros and had raised a total $29.1 million across nine rounds of funding, data from Crunchbase shows. Some of its investors include Pantera Capital, Stellar Development Foundation and Amphora Capital. 

Michael Staib, who previously worked as a technical engineer for Wyre, posted on his LinkedIn profile on Dec. 31, 2022, that, “Wyre won’t continue as a profitable business.”

Former employees told Axios that Giannaros had sent an email during the holiday season informing team members that Wyre would liquidate and terminate its offerings in January 2023. It is alleged that no severance will be provided to employees. 

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Giannaros has not replied to Blockworks’ request for comment.

Dunworth stepped down from Wyre and cashed out 12.5% of his holdings at the company soon after tech platform Bolt failed to acquire the company in September last year. 

According to Dunworth, crypto market volatility and general market conditions in tech had been one of the main reasons for the deal falling through. 

Fintech writer Noah Weidner suspects that the company may have experienced balance sheet issues as early as September.

“I sent an email to Wyre some months back asking about their Yield product — in large part because Wyre+Yield was used by a bunch of small CeDeFi and fintech apps,” he tweeted. “Their response insinuated Wyre+Yield had been closed for months, but some apps were still using it for their treasury.”

Wyre’s now-failed acquisition had been considered monumental, as the $1.5 billion valuation would have been one of the largest non-SPAC deals. The payments platform’s decision to shut down operations may signify the prolonged crypto winter ahead.

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