Categories: ICO

Kraken Denies Rumors of Business Closure and Firing Spree in Halifax

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Photo: Bloomberg, Kraken CEO and Co-Founder Jesse Powell

The news of cryptocurrency exchange Kraken winding up its business in Canada’s Halifax is nothing more than a rumor, according to Kraken’s support representatives, despite some reports saying otherwise.

According to a Reddit user, the San Francisco-based venue is closing its branch in “the unit 102 at 60 Highfield park drive”, which operates primarily as a customer support office, in a move that puts hundreds of jobs at risk and sparked outcry and warnings about employee rights.

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Contributors to the popular discussion thread also claimed that a security breach and giant commotion were at one point “happening up there and private security all over the place escorting people off the premises after making them sign voluntary quit forms.”

Another user, who claimed familiarity with the situation, said that the company held a mandatory staff meeting at 10 am, where staff were informed of their termination.

Next up: Kraken laying off scores off new hires and shutting down at least one office (h/t @ericturnr who found this on Reddit) pic.twitter.com/Ugd4CVZo1o

He commented on the same forum post, which has gained a notable amount of traction: “Security everywhere, required to hand in door fobs. Sitting in lunchroom, get told that due to volumes being down (both trading and support ticket), and in light of the opening of a new office in Asia, we need to reduce costs, and layoff of recently hired (<3 months, approx 57 people) was not enough.”

Another Redditor added on the user-generated social site: “I think they mean a security breach for the office, the address has been posted and it’s a security risk. Kraken certainly wouldn’t be announcing that for more people to know the location.”

The Kraken support team denied the news on Twitter:

We can confirm that we are not shutting down any operations in any specific place, and there has been no security breach. Everything is fine & secure.

Thank you for your reaching out to us with your question!

Most recently, the exchange reiterated their claims in another tweet:

Hi, thanks for your inquiry.
1) We’re 100% secure (Kraken continues to lead in security in the exchange industry), and there’s been no security breach.
2) We’re not closing operations in any specific place.
Thanks again for contacting us.

Despite the firm denial, the wave of rumors continues among the crypto community members on Telegram, Twitter and other platforms. According to various crypto enthusiasts, something’s going on in the Kraken empire and we are expected to see some news on this matter very soon.

Plans for expansion but service suspended in Japan

The rumors of the closure come nearly six months after the exchange told Business Insider that it is preparing to double its head count in 2018 and that there is a significant shortage of people who have expertise and acumen in this space. A person familiar with the company’s operations told the publication that “it is on the fast track to 1,000 employees and it’s prepared to add 800 people to its staff in 2018.”

However, in April Kraken announced that it was pulling its trading services for Japanese residents, citing the rising costs of doing business for its decision, though it said it may re-enter the country in the future.

San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is also mulling ‎registration with US regulators as a licensed broker-dealer firm or ‎an alternative trading system (ATS).

If successful, the Kraken ATS will provide a secondary market ‎liquidity for ICO tokens that are offered and sold as securities. An alternative trading system is a trading venue that is not regulated as ‎an exchange but operates for matching the buy and sell orders of its ‎subscribers.

Kraken was ranked 14th globally by volume over the past 24 hours according to coinmarketcap.com, with $180 million worth of trading.

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