OpenSea lays off 50% of employees

OpenSea, one of the biggest players in the world of NFTs, is making headlines again, but this time it’s not for record-breaking sales.
The company is set to let go of a whopping 50% of its employees, as announced by CEO Devin Finzer (X). This move is part of their grand plan to shift towards “OpenSea 2.0,” which aims to revamp their platform with a focus on technology, reliability, speed, quality and user experience.
Just a year ago, OpenSea had already cut about 20% of its workforce, leaving them with 230 employees. Now, after this latest round of layoffs, they might have as few as 100 employees left.
Employees affected by these changes will receive some support, including six months of healthcare, four months of severance pay and an accelerated timetable for equity vesting.
So, what’s the deal with OpenSea 2.0? The specifics remain somewhat mysterious. The platform’s rollout timeline and product offerings are still under wraps. However, the aim is to build a new foundation that allows OpenSea to innovate faster and operate with a smaller, more user-focused team.
OpenSea was riding high during the NFT boom of 2021 and the first half of 2022, with billions in monthly trading volume. But as the crypto market started to dip in the middle of last year, the NFT craze also lost some steam.
OpenSea even contemplated doing away with creator royalties, which are a cut of secondary market sales returned to the NFT creator.
In August this year, floor prices of well-known NFTs dropped by over 25%, and the prices of lesser-known NFTs also took a hit. OpenSea’s move towards OpenSea 2.0 could be their response to these changing tides in the NFT market.
OpenSea co-founder and CEO Devin Finzer explained that they’re listening to their users and don’t want to be followers but leaders in the industry. With this shift, they aim to make more significant and impactful changes, with a strong emphasis on speed, quality, and conviction.