Coinbase’s Japan Unit Cuts Workforce as Part of Global Layoffs

US-based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc. is closing the bulk of its operations in Japan as part of a move to adjust international investment amid a slump in the digital-asset sector, Bloomberg News reported. The shift comes as the firm cuts 20% of its workforce globally, the latest layoffs at the San Francisco-headquartered firm. Coinbase is scaling back in Japan even as the nation loosens some crypto rules, which has spurred rival Binance — the largest digital-asset exchange — to seek a license to return to the country. “We’ve decided to wind down the majority of our operations in Japan, which led to eliminating most of the roles in our Japan entity,” Nana Murugesan, vice president for business development and international, said in an interview Wednesday. He said Coinbase won’t comment on potential merger and acquisition activity when asked if the Japan unit could be sold. The digital-asset industry has been hammered by a $2 trillion rout in token prices from a 2021 peak and a series of blowups, most recently the bankruptcy of the FTX exchange. That’s triggered a series of layoffs at crypto firms. Coinbase is firing about 950 employees globally, a step Chief Executive Officer Brian Armstrong said was needed to weather the industry downturn. He added that several projects with a lower probability of success will be shut down. Read more.