Crypto Department untouched in Chipper Cash layoffs

Chipper Cash denied reports that it shut down its crypto department, which houses crypto products, one of its three main offerings, including FX and airtime.

By Staff

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Just ten weeks after laying off roughly 12.5% of its workforce (mostly from its engineering team), the African cross-border payments platform Chipper Cash conducted a second round of layoffs last Friday.

On LinkedIn, the business’s VP of revenue announced the breaking news, stating that “all areas” of Chipper Cash’s markets were affected at this time. “Friday was a sad day for Chipper Cash, as many talented people were let go. For my network: there is an incredibly talented pool of individuals across the U.S., U.K., South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, and more. They are all highly experienced in managing very complex, multicultural teams and projects in fintech. All areas have been impacted, from Recruiting, HR, Marketing, Pricing, Product, Analytics, UX, Research, Legal, and more,” the VP’s post read.

Approximately 100 employees at Chipper Cash were laid off, according to several local news sources. Chipper Cash asserted that the reports are generally accurate despite declining to confirm the precise number of roles affected. The five-year-old payments and cryptocurrency startup has therefore laid off over 150 employees in the last three months in addition to the initial round of layoffs in order to cut costs during a challenging time for private and public tech companies globally.

“The last two years were a period of rapid growth and scaling for us as a business and, to reflect this, our global headcount grew by around 250 people,” said CEO Ham Serunjogi in a statement.

“However, given the macroeconomic climate, we are narrowing our current focus to core markets and products, concentrating our efforts where we know we can thrive. With this hyper-focused prioritization, the reality is that we, unfortunately, need a smaller team at Chipper,” he added.

Additionally, Chipper Cash refuted claims that it closed its cryptocurrency division, which houses cryptocurrency products, one of its three main services along with FX and airtime.

“Chipper is one of the largest crypto platforms in Africa today, and it remains one of our fastest-growing products. We are excited about the future of crypto in Africa and continue to invest in the product,” Serunjogi stated. 

Serunjogi and Maijid Moujaled founded Chipper Cash in 2018 to offer Africans a no-fee peer-to-peer cross-border payment service. The company claims to have more than 5 million customers in Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Africa, and Kenya. More recently, the startup, which is backed by FTX, has also expanded to the U.S. and the United Kingdom, where it last year enabled peer-to-peer money transfers from both nations to specific regions in Africa. 

The African cross-border payment app revealed in November of last year that it would buy the Southern African fintech startup Zoona from Zambia. And the month after that, in the wake of FTX’s bankruptcy, we revealed that the African fintech had its valuation reduced from $2 billion to $1.25 billion in accordance with documents revealing Alameda’s venture capital portfolio. The African fintech had raised over $300 million from investors such as the now-defunct crypto exchange, SVB Capital, and Ribbit Capital.

Along with Jumia (900 employees), Yoco (15% of its workforce, according to sources), and Luno (35% of its workforce), Chipper Cash joins a list of crypto companies and businesses with an emphasis on Africa that have recently let go of staff.

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