OpenSea Lays Off 20% of Staff

NFT marketplace OpenSea joins prominent crypto companies in cutting staff


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key takeaways

  • Devin Finzer says OpenSea will still have five years of runway
  • “The reality is that we have entered an unpreceded combination of crypto winter and broad macroeconomic instability.”

Co-founder and CEO of NFT marketplace OpenSea Devin Finzer announced on Twitter today that the company will be downsizing its staff by 20%.

“Each of the people leaving has played a critical role in OpenSea’s journey,” Finzer wrote. “The reality is that we have entered an unpreceded combination of crypto winter and broad macroeconomic instability, and we need to prepare the company for the possibility of a prolonged downturn.

OpenSea says that it will provide its laid-off employees with “generous severance, healthcare coverage in 2023, and accelerated equity vesting for those who haven’t hit their cliff.” Finzer noted he also plans to help departing staff with their job search through personal networks where possible.

The layoffs will place OpenSea in a position to maintain five years of runway through a crypto winter, according to Finzer. 

“With the hard (but important) changes we made today, we’re in an even better position to capture what will soon become the largest market on the planet…Winter is our time to build,” he wrote.

OpenSea joins a slew of prominent crypto companies scaling back headcounts during the bear market. 

The start of June saw crypto exchange Gemini let go of 100 employees — an estimated 10% of its staff — alongside Singaporean-based, which cut 5% of its workforce, a 260 headcount reduction. Weeks later, BlockFi shared the news that it will be slashing staff by 20%, and Coinbase announced it would lay off 18% of its employees. 

There had been indications that the most vulnerable times in crypto were over, earmarked by venture capital firms trickling money back into the space. OpenSea’s layoffs may suggest that the crypto winter is far from over.

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