Coinbase loses Bison Trail co-founders: Sources

Quick Take

  • Bison Trails founders Joe Lallouz and Aaron Henshaw departed Coinbase.
  • The exchange originally paid more than $457 million in 2021 for the infrastructure company. 

The co-founders of Bison Trails left Coinbase today, according to three people familiar with the situation.

Joe Lallouz and Aaron Henshaw created Bison Trails to run infrastructure on multiple blockchains, enabling services like crypto staking. In 2021, Coinbase acquired the company to expand into infrastructure. Axios said the firm paid more than $457 million for Bison Trails. 

When Bison Trails joined Coinbase it was effectively rebranded to Coinbase Cloud. Lallouz was made head of Coinbase Cloud while Henshaw became head of engineering.

The pair are departing amid difficult times for the company and the crypto world overall. Bitcoin has rallied recently, but is still down more than 60% from its all time high in 2021. Earlier this month, Coinbase cut about 950 employees, 20% of staff, and reduced its operating expenses by 25%. In June, it cut 1,100 jobs, and another 60 in November. 

On Jan. 20, Moody's downgraded Coinbase, though it said the company is stable, driven by its "currently healthy liquidity position that is absorbing the ongoing cash flow drain the firm is experiencing." Two days earlier, Coinbase had said it paused business in Japan and advised customers to withdraw their assets from the platform.

The stock recently hit an all-time low, though it hasn't stopped Cathie Wood from buying even more shares.

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