Brazil’s Largest Crypto Exchange’s Holding Firm Fires 15% Staff

Paigambar Mohan Raj
Source: Blockworks

Alt heading: Mercado Bitcoin’s Holding Firm 2TM Fires 15% Staff, Cites “Unfair Competition”

2022 witnessed one of the worst crashes in crypto history. Besides Bitcoin (BTC) having its worst quarter, we also saw many crypto firms go underwater. Furthermore, top companies let go of many employees to cut costs.

Following that trend, 2TM has laid off 15% of its workforce, or about 100 employees. 2TM is the holding company for Mercado Bitcoin, Brazil‘s largest crypto exchange by market valuation.

In July 2021, Mercado Bitcoin raised $200 million in a Series B fundraising round, valuing 2TM at $2.1 billion.

Are foreign crypto exchanges at an unfair advantage?

Per an official statement, the continued economic adversity played a part in the company’s decision to let go of its workers. A spokesperson told CoinDesk that foreign exchanges were not following the same reporting and KYC (know-your0customer) standards, making room for “unbalanced competition.”

The firm stated,

“The competitive environment remains deteriorated and unfair, lacking the approval of the legal framework for crypto-activities, as players following the law are penalized by companies that ignore local rules.”

Brazil’s local senate approved a crypto bill in April, which is yet to be voted on by the country’s Chamber of Deputies. ABCripto, an association of local exchanges, has asked the Chamber of Deputies to ask crypto exchanges to have an employer identification number to apply for a license in Brazil. Foreign exchanges have not taken a liking to this measure.

This is not the first time 2TM has let go of employees. In early June, the company laid off over 80 workers. The company had stated that the scenario went beyond reducing operational costs.

Bitso, the primary rival of Mercado Bitcoin in Brazil, also laid off 45% of its workers. Additionally, Argentina-based Buenbit also laid off 45% of its workers.

Crypto markets have again entered a downward trend after a brief relief period in mid-August. This crypto winter is one of the coldest, as reflected in the company’s strategies. Many employees of cryptocurrency firms found themselves without a job, and the trend seems to stick around.

At press time, the crypto market cap stood at $1.03 trillion, up by 0.7% in 24 hours.