USD Coin (USDC) issuer Circle plans to increase its workforce by 15-25% in 2023 amid a sea of layoffs across the industry, reported the Wall Street Journal.
At a time when a significant chunk of industry-wide firms is laying off staff to mitigate their financial woes, Circle has gone against the tide to hire more people.
41% of all layoffs in 2023 came from the cryptocurrency industry. Major cryptocurrency firms that made significant employee cuts include Polygon, Chainalysis, Bittrex, Huobi, Crypto.com, Coinbase, Gemini, Genesis, and Wyre.
A major factor behind crypto companies reducing manpower was attributed to the prolonged crypto winter and a number of crypto implosions that wiped out billions from the balance sheets of numerous companies associated with them. However, the large-scale crypto industry layoffs were not in isolation. Around 48,000 people in January alone were let go from just four companies: Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Salesforce.
The decision to increase its workforce for Circle comes just months after canceling its public debut. Earlier in December, Circle mutually terminated its plans to go public with the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Concord Acquisition. The deal was announced in July 2021 with a preliminary valuation of $4.5 billion and was then amended in February 2022 when Circle’s valuation ballooned to $9 billion.
Circle’s chief financial officer Jeremy Fox-Geen said that they still intend to go public but are waiting for better market conditions. He added that the crypto industry needs more distance from the TerraUSD crash and the implosion of crypto exchange FTX so that public-market investors can re-evaluate the future of digital-assets businesses.
Related: Crypto firms cut nearly 3,000 jobs in January despite Bitcoin’s rise
By the end of 2022, the stablecoin issuer had roughly 900 employees, and in 2023, it plans to increase that number by 135 to 225. It is, however, growing at a slower rate than it did in 2022, when the headcount more than doubled from 2021.
Circle-issued USDC is currently the second-largest stablecoin behind Tether’s USDT with a market cap of $42 billion.