It isn’t a secret that 2018 and early-2019’s Bitcoin crash-induced winter has ravaged crypto upstarts. Yet, some firms have been bitten worse by the frostbite than others, cutting an array of staffers, instead of mere costs.

Enter the worst crypto winter yet. Bitcoin martyr Charlie Shrem recently corroborated the idea that the recent tumult is the worst yet.

Bitcoin Giant Huobi Is Catching A Cold

Three weeks ago, Live Coin Watch reported that China’s Huobi, along with Bitmain, was looking to “optimize staff,” cutting its worst-performing employees/workers. While the layoffs were confirmed, at the time, scant details were known about the situation.

Just recently, however, a company representative — and a C-suiter at that — sat down with the South China Morning Post (SCMP) to clear the air about his company, which purportedly once offered an unnamed senior executive 300 BTC (then $3,000,000) in bonuses. In an interview with the Hong Kong-based outlet, Livio Weng Xiaoqi, CEO of Huobi Global, the company’s most well-known arms, spoke on his firm’s condition.

Weng surprisingly noted that Huobi is profitable each and every month, in spite of exchange volumes shrinking to one-tenth of the company all-time record. However, in spite of maintained profitability, the head of the conglomerate’s foremost branch explained that there is a chance Huobi may eventually have to “struggle to survive,” touching on the fact that winter could go well beyond rational timeframes.

As such, Weng made it clear that Huobi has to establish a “plan in advance and spend carefully.”

And this time, it seems as though Huobi’s plan was to cut off limbs, as hinted at earlier. In fact, per the member of Huobi’s top brass, it was explained that the company has purged employees in its venture capital and news aggregation projects. The crypto-centric news portal, known as Huobi Info, is now managed by a handful of staffers. Moreover, in early-January,  the company shut down its Shenzhen subsidiary, focused on R&D.

In spite of this internal company turmoil, Weng remained optimistic, citing his firm’s newest product, the Chat (wallet & messenger) mobile app. Again though, he was cautious with his words, closing by noting that Huobi’s innovative roster needs a “window of opportunity” — likely another parabolic rally — to sufficiently pay off.

Crypto Bear Shows Its Fangs

While the Chinese Bitcoin heavyweight seems to have found some semblance of stability, its peers across the globe have continued to suffer. Per previous reports, Bitmain shuttered its operations in Amsterdam, Israel, and Texas just recently. BlockEx, a London-headquartered upstart with visions of grandeur, recently revealed that “staff reductions” had taken place.

Blockfolio, the company behind a world-renowned crypto-related mobile application, revealed that it too made cuts, purging four employees, while also putting Datablock, an affiliated venture focused on providing data rights for consumers, on the proverbial backburner.

Days prior to the Blockfolio news, Erik Voorhees, dubbed “Bitcoin’s last gunslinger” by Forbes’ Crypto team, took to his company’s blog to reveal that ShapeShift, the startup behind an exchange that shares its name, CoinCap, and KeepKey, laid off 37 employees — one-third of the startup’s team.

With all this in mind, many have been left wondering — which Bitcoin company is on the chopping block next?


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