Kraken Employees Learned of Termination Through Disabled Laptops

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  • Kraken employees only learned of their redundancy when access to their laptops was disabled
  • A personal email explained that they had been let go and informed them of their severance details
  • The move is similar to the botched way that Elon Musk handled Twitter’s staff cull

Many of the 1,100 Kraken employees let go yesterday only found out they had been made redundant when they were denied access to their work computers. Emails to personal accounts were also sent informing them of the decision to let them go, but those not checking their emails before trying to log in got a nasty surprise. The move is reminiscent of the actions of Twitter’s new owner Elon Musk’s method of letting go of half the social media platform’s workforce earlier this month.

Crypto Winter Hits Kraken

Kraken had made no suggestion that it was going to cut jobs, with the exchange frequently referring to its sensible running and its experience of bear markets when discussing how it would handle the coming gloom.

However, it seems that this crypto winter might be the harshest one yet for Kraken, with the company yesterday saying that it had made one of the “hardest decisions at Kraken to date” and let go of around 30% of its workforce.

In a blog post explaining the move, Kraken blamed the “macroeconomic and geopolitical factors” that have “weighed on financial markets”, resulting in “significantly lower trading volumes and fewer client sign-ups.”

Employees Treated Poorly

Reducing hires and “avoiding large marketing commitments” made a small difference, Kraken said, but eventually the “negative influences on the financial markets” continued and Kraken said it had no choice but to make the cut.

This is understandable, but for many involved it was the way they found out that stung – a Kraken employee told us that many only found out when they found that access to their company laptops or accounts were disabled, and the penny only dropped when they checked their personal email.

Kraken said in its post that its priority was “to ensure all departing Krakenites receive comprehensive support as they transition from the company”, but it’s clear from the way it was handled that the support received was, initially, non-existent.

Kraken follows other major exchanges such as Coinbase, Gemini and others in cutting employee numbers to reduce losses in the bear market.