Leading cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturer Ledger may be about to lay off 10% of its 200-strong workforce as business starts to slow down over the cryptocurrency ecosystem’s bear market.
According to French news outlet Presse Citron, Ledger hasn’t yet fired anyone from its staff, but as many as 20 of those working in its support division may be at risk. Behind the potential move are declining sales.
Per the news outlet Ledger’s products, including Ledger Vault, have been performing decently well, enough to keep it from pulling the trigger. The company, sold over 1 million Ledger devices in 2017, and saw the figure be “divided by more than two” last year.
CryptoGlobe recently interviewed Ledger President Pascal Gauthier, in the interview he said that the company had not been caught off guard as he thought bitcoin at $20,000 was clearly unsistainable. He further noted that the bear market has given Ledger - and other crypto companies - time to solidfy their infrastructure.
In late 2017 the crypto space reached its peak market cap, with bitcoin reached a near $20,000 all-time high before starting to drop. Throughout 2018 its price kept going down, until it got to $3,200 in December. Since then, it’s been slowly recovering.
Presse Citron cites an unnamed investor who claimed the company, at its peak, had revenues of over €10 million per month, but saw them drop sharply throughout the bear market. The investor was quoted as saying:
At one point, they exceeded 10 million [in] monthly revenues. This is clearly no longer the case. Fortunately for Ledger, it raised a lot of money, "at the best moment", to anticipate a trend reversal.
The company has recently claimed that the “wallet.fail” presentation at the 35th Chaos Communication Congress (35C3) didn’t manage to demonstrate any “practical vulnerabilities,” noting cryptocurrencies stored with Ledger are “still secure.”
The company has also earlier this year announced the Ledger Nano X, an improved version of the Ledger Nano S with Bluetooth support, a larger screen, and larger storage space than its predecessor. It also won a Startup of the Year award from Ernst & Young.
Despite these developments, Ledger recently faced “unexpected production issues” that forced to delay the shipment of these new devices for “at least 1 month.”
Due to unexpected production issues at the last minute, we’re deeply sorry to tell you that the Ledger Nano X shipment will be delayed for at least 1 month.— Ledger (@Ledger) March 21, 2019
We’re doing all we can to ship them as soon as possible and will keep you posted.
Read more here: https://t.co/9qaalUCaP8 pic.twitter.com/garP2lEPmG
While Ledger hasn’t yet started laying off staff, other companies in the crypto space have. These including cryptocurrency mining hardware manufacturer Bitmain, and Steemit Inc, the company behind the popular Steemit platform.