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Bakkt Cuts 13% of Staff as Execs Depart

Bakkt is cutting staff after warning earlier this year about the future of the company.

The cryptocurrency platform said in an April 29 securities filing that it is laying off 28 workers, or 13% of its non-call center staff.

“The reduction in force is a component of a broader strategic review of the company’s operations that is intended to more effectively align resources with business priorities,” the filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said.

The document also notes that Charles Goodroe will step down as Bakkt’s chief accounting officer on May 22. Karen Alexander, the company’s chief financial officer, will assume the role of Bakkt’s chief accountant.

Goodroe’s departure follows March’s announcement that CEO Gavin Michael was stepping down. Andy Main, who had been serving on Bakkt’s board since the company went public in 2021, was appointed to take Michael’s place.

In February, the company had said in an SEC filing that it might not be able to continue as a “going concern.”

“As a result of our expected operating losses and cash burn for the foreseeable future and recurring losses from operations, if we are unable to raise sufficient capital through additional debt or equity arrangements, there will be uncertainty regarding our ability to maintain liquidity sufficient to operate our business effectively,” the filing said.

However, Main said upon his appointment that the proceeds from a capital raise and its plans to reduce cash expenses and other related cost savings had “alleviated the conditions that raised substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern.”

The company’s job cuts come amid a period of heightened activity in the crypto sector which — as noted here Sunday (May 5) — has companies are reembracing the idea of crypto payments.

For example, Coinbase — the largest crypto exchange in the U.S. — said last week that payments have emerged as a major area of opportunity.

“[We’re] driving utility in crypto,” CEO Brian Armstrong said on a recent earnings call. “We’re doing this through Base, our low-cost Layer 2 solution, and building a better payments experience on crypto rails.” 

And in late April, Stripe said it was rejoining the cryptocurrency payment space following a six-year break.

“Crypto is back,” John Collison, the company’s president and co-founder, said during a company keynote entitled “The Future of Payments.”

“We’re excited to announce that we’re bringing back crypto as a way to accept payments, but this time with a much better experience,” he said.