STEPN to lay off over 100 staff

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The makers of the once-popular play-to-earn game Stepn, which lets users earn non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and cryptocurrencies through jogging, have started to let go of many contract workers, with the company seeing a continuous drop in player numbers amid a struggling cryptocurrency market.

Find Satoshi Labs has terminated the contracts of more than 100 community moderators of the game’s social media channels and “ambassadors”, whom the company pays to promote the game in different regions, according to a report by cryptocurrency news outlet Wu Blockchain and people familiar with the matter.

Launched last December by Australia-based Chinese entrepreneurs Jerry Huang and Yawn Rong, the game quickly gained traction around the world but has recently lost many of its players, as the global cryptocurrency market continues to struggle after a crash in May.

On OpenSea, one of the world’s biggest NFT marketplaces, monthly sales volume of ethereum-based NFTs dropped from US$4.8 billion in January to just US$348 million in September, according to estimates on Dune Analytics. US regulators are also ramping up their scrutiny of the digital assets.

In May, Stepn had more than 700,000 monthly active users, but this has declined to around 52,000 this month, according to data on Dune Analytics.

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