This article was published on October 8, 2018

UK’s oldest Bitcoin exchange ousts most of its staff, blames bearish market

Some of the early Bitcoin businesses are crumbling.

UK’s oldest Bitcoin exchange ousts most of its staff, blames bearish market
Neer Varshney
Story by

Neer Varshney

Former TNW writer

The cryptocurrency market’s growth has been stagnant for too long now — and businesses seem to be losing hope.

The UK’s oldest Bitcoin exchange desk Coinfloor is ousting most of its 40 employees, London-based Financial News reported today.

The company’s CEO Obi Nwosu told Financial News that the exchange is seeing a significant drop in trading volume across the market compelling them to make some changes. He said:

Coinfloor is currently undergoing a business restructure to focus on our competitive advantages in the marketplace and to best serve our clients. As part of this restructure, we are making some staff changes and redundancies.

Coinfloor was the first cryptocurrency exchange in the UK to open trading of Bitcoin against the pound sterling back in 2013. The company raised an undisclosed amount of funding from VC firm Passion Capital and TransferWise founder Taavet Hinrikus.

The exchange desk played a vital role in bringing in the “regulations era” for cryptocurrency trading, especially in the aftermath of the Mt. Gox debacle.

A host of cryptocurrency exchange desks have emerged since then, and today Coinfloor isn’t even among the top 100 exchanges by trading volume. For context, it has seen $487,826 worth of cryptocurrencies traded on its platform over the past 24 hours. In comparison, the largest exchange desk Binance has seen $806 million.

The cryptocurrency market saw a meteoric rise late last year as Bitcoin’s market price reached $20,000 in December, but the prices have been falling ever since, and the apex cryptocurrency is only worth $6,587 at the time of writing. This has spelt trouble for businesses that hold a majority of their wealth in cryptocurrencies, as their reserves shrink significantly.

It’ll be interesting to see whether the cuts help Coinfloor do better as a business. The competition for it is intense as the UK has the highest number of exchange desks in the world, but most of the cryptocurrency trading happens in Asian countries.

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