Only months earlier, crypto exchange Binance had said that there were hundreds of open positions that it would aim to fill and its headcount was under ‘reevaluation’.
Now, the largest crypto exchange in terms of trading volume has announced that it would be slashing its workforce.
According to the company, employees would be laid off, as it is dealing with the toughest scrutiny in the six years it has existed.
While Binance confirmed that it had let go off its staff, the company did not provide any details about the numbers.
Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of Binance, who is referred to as ‘CZ’ clarified on Twitter that the numbers that the media was reporting were not accurate.
On Friday, it had been reported by The Wall Street Journal that Binance had laid off more than 1,000 employees.
Later, CNBC reported that the crypto exchange was planning on laying off between 1,500 and 3,000 employees.
According to the exchange, the previous headcount of the company globally had stood at 8,000. A prepared statement was issued by Binance, which had also been released back in May.
It said that rather than ‘rightsizing’, the exchange was just reevaluating to ensure that they had the right talent.
A spokesperson for the exchange said that while they could not provide numbers, they could only confirm that people had indeed been laid off.
The CEO of the crypto behemoth said on Friday that even though terminations had happened involuntarily, but the exchange was still hiring.
Back in May, Colin Wu, a journalist, had cited multiple sources and stated in a newsletter that Binance was laying off staff.
At the time, a prepared statement had been issued by the exchange in which it would not confirm that it was reducing staff and only said that talent density was its focus.
The slashing in the headcount of the crypto exchange comes at a time when the controversial company is under investigation by a number of law enforcement agencies and regulators.
13 civil charges were filed by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in June against Binance, its sister company Binance US, which is considered an independent company, and the CEO, Changpeng Zhao.
According to the regulator’s complaint, the company had disregarded the federal securities law blatantly and put the assets of investors at significant risk for earning billions of US dollars.
Meanwhile, the exchange has also been under investigation by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) for years.
Recently, the company hired George Canellos, who is a renowned criminal defense lawyer and had also served as the co-director of the Division of Enforcement of the SEC.
According to rumors, the company decided to hire him in order to prepare for federal charges, which are imminent.
Other than Binance, the SEC has also targeted other crypto exchanges, which include Coinbase, the biggest crypto exchange in the US, and Kraken.
The regulator is set on regulating the crypto industry via the enforcement approach.