THE Amberone of the leading platforms for cryptocurrencies gives Asiawill make layoffs, abandon retail operations and end its sponsorship of the football English Chelsea in the latest shakeup of the digital assets industry.
The decisions are part of a broader cost-cutting strategy, according to a person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified.
The Singapore-based crypto brokerage and lender, whose investors include Temasek Holdings and Sequoia Chinawill reduce its workforce to fewer than 400 from around 700 currently, the person said, adding that the number of employees has now reached around 1,100.
It’s the latest indication of the reduced outlook for virtual assets after the stock market’s spectacular crash. FTX and Sam Bankman-Fried’s brokerage Alameda Research a month ago.
Amber will now focus on large institutional investors, family offices and wealthy individuals, the person said, adding that the number of clients will drop to around 100 from hundreds of thousands because of the retail exit.
In recent days, the company has refuted online speculation that it could be the next domino to fall after a series of crypto implosions and a $2 trillion sell-off. A top executive tweeted on Wednesday that the company was operating normally.
Amber plans to move to a less expensive office in Hong Kongwhile some smaller offices in other regions are likely to be closed, with remaining employees allowed to work from home, the person said.
Chelsea and Amber announced a partnership in May that included the display of Amber’s WhaleFin trading platform logo on the sleeves of the team’s shirts during the 2022-2023 season.
The sponsorship agreement was valued at 🇧🇷 20 million ($25 million) a year. Amber is now dealing with the legal process to terminate the agreement, the person familiar with the matter said.
Amber was launched in 2018 by a group of founders that included former Morgan Stanley traders and raised $200 million from a $3 billion valuation in February. Bloomberg News reported earlier this week that Amber had suspended a $100 million fundraising.
One of the company’s co-founders, Tiantian Kullander, unexpectedly passed away in his sleep in November at the age of 30.
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