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(Kitco news) – The ongoing crypto winter has devastated crypto payment service provider Wyra, which will reportedly shut down its services by the end of January.
According to a report from Axios, Ioannis Giannaros, CEO of Wyre, recently sent an email to the company’s employees informing them that he was liquidating the company and that he planned to end services this month.
“We will continue to do everything we can, but I want everyone to prepare for the fact that we will have to go out of business over the next few weeks,” the email said. “We’re still working, but we’ll be scaling back to plan our next steps,” Ginnaros said in a follow-up email.
It seems that some employees knew this development was coming. On Dec. 31, Michael Staib, a technical engineer who previously worked for Wyre, said in a since-deleted LinkedIn post that “Wyre will not continue as a profitable business.”
On Thursday, popular crypto wallet MetaMask appeared to confirm the demise of Wyre when it did announced that it has removed Wyre from its mobile aggregator, which allows users to buy cryptocurrencies directly through their digital wallets.
“We are currently working on removing the extension and appreciate your patience,” MetaMask said, imploring users not to use Wyre on the mobile aggregator.
Wyre was originally founded in 2013 by Ioannis Giannaros and Michael Dunworth and has raised a total of $29.1 million in nine funding rounds, according to data from Crunchbase. Some of its investors include Kraken, Pantera Capital, Stellar Development Foundation, and Samsung NEXT and Draper Associates.
Last April, one-click payments provider Bolt was in talks to acquire Wyre for $1.5 billion, but that deal was ultimately called off in September after Wyre and Bolt decided to remain independent.
According to Dunworth, the volatility of the crypto market and general conditions in the technology market are the main reasons for the deal’s demise.
There were plans for the two companies to enter into a commercial agreement where Bolt would implement Wyre’s one-click solution for Bolt’s user platform, but that now looks unlikely after this development at Wyre.
Wyre is far from the only company significantly affected by the bear market of 2022. In addition to the collapse of Terra/Luna and FTX, which sent ripples throughout the ecosystem, multiple other companies have filed for bankruptcy, including Three Arrows Capital, Voyager Digital , Celsius, BlockFi and Core Scientific.
A number of other companies also announced significant layoffs, including Kraken, Huobi, Galaxy Digital, Coinbase, Digital Currency Group, Genesis Global Capital, Dapper Labs, Bybit, Crypto.com, and Silvergate Bank.
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