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Troubled Crypto Lender Amber Group Raises $300 Million Amid Layoffs and Refocusing Efforts

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Amid the ongoing cryptocurrency market downturn, troubled Asian crypto trading firm Amber Group has managed to collect some $300 million under its series C round, led by the US arm of blockchain-focused venture capital firm Fenbushi Capital US and joined by a number of crypto-native investors and family offices. 

“This new round of fundraising demonstrates investor confidence in Amber’s business and the commitment to shape our future together. As part of that future, it’s important for us to adapt and protect our clients in this challenging market environment,” tweeted the company which has decided to lay off a share of its staff amid refocusing efforts. 

The Hong Kong-based Amber Group calls itself a “one-stop crypto finance service provider that provides liquidity provision, trading and asset management services 24/7.”

Amber Group said that, prior to the collapse of major crypto exchange FTX, the business was in the process of completing an extension to its series B+ round at a valuation of some $3 billion as it was readying for a potentially prolonged crypto winter. 

“Post the FTX collapse, we paused after a partial closing and instead moved forward on Series C,” according to the company. “As previously disclosed, less than 10% of our total trading capital was with FTX at the time of its collapse, but we did have to rebalance some positions. None of this impacted our daily operations or our business continuity.”

The crypto industry player says that its objectives for 2023 comprise focusing on its core business and clients. 

“Moving forward, we will be scaling down our mass consumer efforts and non-essential business lines, in an effort to focus on our core businesses and clients. These have not been easy decisions, and we unfortunately have had to say goodbye to many of our excellent colleagues,” according to Amber Group. 

It is noteworthy the latest funding round took place shortly after Amber Group lost one of its co-founders. Last month, Tiantian Kullander died in his sleep at the age of 30. Also known as “TT,” Kullander behind a wife and a son. 

In addition to his work related to Amber Group, Kullander sat on the board of esports company Fnatic and was a founder of KeeperDAO, a decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol that enables users to trade, borrow and stake assets with protection from miner value-extracted bots, before he launched Amber Group in 2017, TT worked as an emerging markets trader at financial services giant Morgan Stanley. Amber Group described TT as a loving and hard-working person who “put his heart and soul into the company”.

 

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