NFT Pioneer Yuga Labs Joins Crypto Sector Layoffs Amid Industry Challenges

October 16, 2023

By Anjali Kochhar

Yuga Labs, the prominent crypto entity behind acclaimed NFT collections like Bored Ape Yacht Club and CryptoPunks, has announced a series of staff layoffs as part of an internal restructuring effort, according to reports by Bloomberg.

The company’s recently appointed CEO, Daniel Alegre, revealed the need for this overhaul in an email circulated to employees on Friday. Alegre, who assumed his role six months ago, expressed his realisation that certain projects, though well-intentioned, either stretched the team too thin or demanded expertise beyond their core strengths.

While the exact number of affected employees remains undisclosed, a Yuga spokesperson confirmed that the company still maintains a workforce of over 120 members. Founded in 2021, Yuga soared to a valuation of $4 billion after securing $450 million in funding through a round in March of the preceding year.

Alegre, a former president of gaming industry powerhouse Activision Blizzard, underscored the challenges faced by the company in the launches of its video game ventures, citing issues stemming from their in-house development approach. He also noted a lack of substantial progress in the development of Otherside, the anticipated metaverse platform initially unveiled in 2022.

This announcement comes amid a wave of layoffs within the crypto sector. Just last Thursday, crypto hardware company Ledger reduced its workforce by 12%. Throughout this month, several projects in the NFT and decentralised finance sectors have taken steps to downsize their staff or halt operations. Notably, Proof, the creator of Moonbirds, and lending startup Yield Protocol, backed by Paradigm, are among those taking similar measures.

Yuga Labs’ decision to restructure its operations reflects the broader challenges faced by companies in the crypto industry. As the sector evolves and navigates new terrain, adaptability and strategic optimisation have become key elements in ensuring long-term success.

About the author

Anjali Kochhar covers cryptocurrency stories in India as well as globally. Having been in the field of media and journalism for over three years now, she has developed a sharp news sense and works hard to present information that goes beyond the obvious. She is an avid reader and loves writing on a wide range of subjects.

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