Polygon Labs, the company behind Ethereum scaling network Polygon, laid off over 19% of its staff Thursday in the latest shakeup for one of crypto’s most popular blockchains.
Some 60 Polygon Labs team members were informed on Thursday morning that their positions had been terminated, according to the company. A Polygon Labs spokesperson confirmed with Decrypt that the cuts were made across all regions and teams, and impacted both full-time and contract positions.
Thursday’s cuts come less than a year after Polygon underwent an even larger 100-employee layoff early last year. At the time, the company’s leadership said the massive action was made necessary by a corporate restructuring that created redundancies across numerous teams.
Unspoken realities colored those layoffs too, though; macro conditions in the decimated crypto sector, accelerated by the collapse of FTX in late 2022, ushered in a wave of layoffs across the industry so seismic that they constituted the lion’s share of pink slips across the global economy.
At Polygon Labs, we are on a mission to fundamentally change the Internet so that everyone in the world is empowered to equitably access its value. Building the infrastructure to make that happen is no easy feat. It requires executing ambitiously and nimbly with an efficient,…
— Marc Boiron (@0xMarcB) February 1, 2024
Today, Polygon similarly avoided attributing cuts to the still-frail crypto market, framing them as a necessary step in eliminating red tape and streamlining operations.
“To move as ambitiously and nimbly as possible where everyone is able to take ownership of what they’re doing, we must create an efficient surgical team, with significantly less bureaucracy,” Marc Boiron, Polygon Labs’ CEO, said today in a blog post. “As a smaller team, we can collaborate more, expedite demanding projects, and execute at our highest potential.”
Boiron took over Polygon’s top post from former YouTube executive Ryan Wyatt in July. The shakeup came amidst a wave of departures last year of several Polygon co-founders and executives, who either left for other companies or shifted focus to new projects. Wyatt later joined rival Ethereum scaler Optimism as its Chief Growth Officer.
Employees impacted by Thursday’s layoffs have received offers of two months’ severance pay and health benefits through the end of this month. All of the roughly 300 employees remaining at the company will receive raises of 15% between their combined salary and MATIC token grants, dated retroactively to January 1. Newer hires will receive a 5% bump.
Polygon is currently the 6th largest decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem in crypto, with a total value locked (TVL) of $811.69 million, according to DeFi Llama. In December, the network was overtaken in that metric by rival Solana, which has enjoyed tremendous ecosystem-wide growth in the last few months.
Edited by Andrew Hayward