Gemini, the cryptocurrency exchange co-founded by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, announced that it would reduce its workforce by 10%. However, this is the third time Gemini has conducted layoffs in less than a year. Unlike many of its counterparts, Gemini is subject to New York banking regulations.
Gemini reduced its workforce in November 2022 due to restructuring. According to PitchBook data, Gemini decreased from having 1,000 employees in November 2022 to around 100 people. Also, June and July 2022 saw 10% and 7% reductions.
Since the bankruptcy filing of Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto exchange FTX on November 11th, many major cryptocurrency firms such as Crypto.com, Coinbase, Kraken, and Genesis have been forced to reduce their staffs. Coinbase laid off 20% of its employees for the second time to conserve money during the crypto market downturn.
Cameroon Winklevoss blamed the latest layoff decision on economic conditions and fraudulent behavior by malicious entities. He stated that the exchange had no choice but to reduce headcount.
Gemini has experienced a turbulent struggle concerning customer funds over the past few weeks. Also, they are currently embroiled with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding an unregistered offering and the sale of securities related to their partnership with Barry Silbert’s now-defunct company, Genesis.
Recently, Gemini experienced a highly contentious confrontation with Silbert’s Genesis Trading—an alluring crypto-lending firm that delivered promising returns to Gemini users through their high-yield loan product known as ‘Gemini Earn.’
The relationship between Gemini and Genesis ended when FTX filed for bankruptcy. As a result, Genesis abruptly ceased lending and redemptions on their platform, leaving customers short of an estimated $900 million. Also, it triggered Gemini Earn to suspend its services shortly after—with no prior warning.
Months after Gemini Earn’s termination, Gemini customers became increasingly irate. A class-action lawsuit has been formed in response to this outrage. On January 19th, Genesis filed for bankruptcy protection with a list of their 50 biggest unsecured creditors; sitting at the top was Gemini with an astounding $765.9 million—more than $300 million higher than any other creditor.