Barely over a year ago, the price of Bitcoin was at an all-time high at almost $20,000. The cryptocurrency market was generally bullish with new cryptos and ICOs hitting the market literally every week. Some experts like Mike Novogratz, a former Goldman Sachs official, went as far as predicting that Bitcoin would reach $40,000 by the end of 2017.

Sadly, as at press time, the price of Bitcoin is standing at a meagre $3,840, approximately 80% from its all-time high. Some cryptocurrencies have reduced by up to 90%. As expected, a sizeable number of cryptos and the businesses built on them have responded to this crypto winter by laying off staff or simply shutting down.

According to CoinGecko's Crypto Layoff List, Steemit has laid off 70% of its staff, mighty Consensys has cut 13%, ETCDEV had no option than to shut down. Popular crypto mining hardware producer, Bitmain was forced to let go 1500 persons (50% of its staff). More recently, on the 9th of January, ShapeShift laid off 33% of its workforce (37 staffs). The list is quite elaborate, containing names like Kraken, CoinFloor, Coinbase, Houbi, and Seele, amongst others.

In the midst of the crypto winter, masternodes became a favorite for investors. As reported in one of our articles, despite the decline in Google search for terms like ‘bitcoin’ and ‘cryptocurrency’, investors are actively searching for masternode investments. This raises a pertinent question – is the crypto winter also affecting the masternode sector?

Well, the answer is yes. Masternode coins have not been exempted from the volatile and bearish price actions in the crypto space. Several masternode projects have either downsized or gearing up for a shutdown. StakeUnited closed their masternode and PoS service on January 9. Mintnodes has also announced that they will be shutting down by January 15. Furthermore we have seen regular delistings on several masternode monitoring sites.

One of the characteristics of the crypto winter is that several businesses, as already seen above, will downsize or outrightly discontinue operations.