Kraken Retreats: Crypto Exchange Shuts Abu Dhabi Office, Cuts Workforce

Zinger Key Points
  • Kraken shuts Abu Dhabi office, reduces global workforce by 30%.
  • The majority of the Middle East and North Africa team affected.

Cryptocurrency exchange Kraken closed its Abu Dhabi office less than a year after obtaining a local license as part of its ongoing retrenchment efforts.

The company reportedly laid off most of its team focused on the Middle East and North Africa, affecting around eight employees.

The exchange also suspended support for transactions in UAE's currency, the dirham, but clients in the region would still be able to use the platform by converting their deposits into dollars.

The crypto industry has been hit hard by market turmoil in the past year, leading to a wave of layoffs, including those at Kraken, Coinbase Global Inc. COIN, and Gemini.

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Despite some improvement in crypto prices in 2023, low volumes were still affecting exchange revenues.

Kraken also scaled back its global expansion plans and recently closed its operations in Japan and announced plans to cut 30% of its global workforce, equating to approximately 1,100 people.

The firm's managing director for the region, Benjamin Ampen, will remain with the company to assist with the transition and was expected to leave Kraken afterward.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Kraken told Bloomberg, "As part of our ongoing efforts to streamline operations and optimize resources, we have made the difficult decision to close our Abu Dhabi office. This decision was not taken lightly, but we believe it is in the best interest of the company and our clients."

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Photo: Sergei Elagin via Shutterstock

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Posted In: CryptocurrencyNewsGlobalMarketsabu dhabiCoinbaseCrypto.comCryptocurrency ExchangeJapanKrakenMiddle EastNorth Africa
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