UPDATE (February 12, 2019, 16:15 UTC): Ripple originally declined to comment on bonus packages, including whether they would still be available in 2019. After this article was published, a Ripple spokesperson made the following statement:
“Ripple doesn’t offer any technical compensation packages that include XRP bonuses. In late 2018, we discovered that a contracted recruiter was incorrectly suggesting to potential employees that such packages were available. This person hasn’t worked for us in months. “
Silicon Valley fintech startup Ripple goes out of its way to say that it didn’t create the cryptocurrency XRP. However, this does not mean that the company does not rely on its huge token reserves when advertising to potential employees.
An engineer who wanted to remain anonymous showed CoinDesk a recruiting email in late 2018 promising an XRP package from Ripple valued at up to $ 3 million and a generous salary offer.
According to the company’s LinkedIn, Ripple plans to hire more than a dozen engineers and technical experts, including a new technical director for its xCurrent project, which is set to compete with the old messaging network SWIFT at the heart of the current global payments infrastructure.
Salaries can vary depending on seniority. Based on conversations with two potential employees, engineers say XRP bonuses generally range from $ 1 million to $ 6 million. At press time, XRP is trading at around $ 0.30 per token.
(Ripple declined to comment on bonus packages, including whether they would still be available in 2019.)
A former Ripple employee who wanted to remain anonymous for fear of legal retaliation told CoinDesk that he had never heard of such XRP bonus packages before 2017. However, he also noted that generous stock deals are standard in Silicon Valley.
In September 2018, a potential tech employee who wanted to remain anonymous because he works at a company that may one day work with Ripple told CoinDesk that he had also received an email from a recruiter working on behalf of Ripple works and claims packages valued at $ 3 to 6 million US dollars for lucrative XRP. Both engineers currently work at top tech companies in Silicon Valley, despite being the second programmer at a crypto company (hence the higher offering).
In addition, the global market capitalization of “its [Ripple’s] Coin ”was worth $ 48 billion. According to CoinMarketCap, XRP’s global market cap was closer to $ 13.3 billion on the day the email was sent. The budding engineer told CoinDesk that he found this discrepancy alarming.
Regarding the unusual bonus offer he noticed, the anonymous engineer said Ripple was “a very unpopular entity in the field of cryptography among technologists,” and he believes the company “is forced to do whatever it takes to attract engineers “during the bear market.
A Ripple representative told CoinDesk that the company currently employs approximately 90 engineers and technology professionals and plans to “aggressively” hire to expand its software service offering and support RippleNet wallets and payout processes.
This is part of an ongoing hiring frenzy. The company representative said that Ripple hired 100 new employees across the company in 2018, adding:
“We’re moving fast to attract the best talent – especially given the fierce competition from other startups looking to hire similar candidates.”
Former Ripple community liaison Jon Holmquist told CoinDesk that developer salaries and allowances are rising across Silicon Valley. Because of this, Holmquist said any hiring issues could be related to the general market downturn, not Ripple in particular.
“Nobody wants to join Crypto for the first time during a bear market. I think that’s more of an industry-wide problem, ”said Holmquist. “There is always a shortage of talent.”
The anonymous engineer disagreed, considering the other types of recruiting emails he routinely receives.
“This is for a Devops role that is generally harder to find, but those are really big numbers,” said the anonymous engineer, referring to both the salary and the XRP bonus package. “It seems a bit desperate.”
Serial entrepreneur Dave Schukin tweeted last June that the company offered him more than $ 175,000 as a base salary, which seems to be in line with CoinDesk’s other offering.
Regarding what Ripple is looking for, the company rep said it is recruiting software experts with Java or C ++ language skills and a sufficient dose of teachability.
“We’re not necessarily looking for blockchain experts – we can always impart domain-specific expertise,” she said. “We also think it’s important that our engineers behave humbly and think creatively about how to solve difficult problems.”
Ripple image over shutterstock
Update (February 11th, 21:00 UTC): This article has been updated to clarify that the recruiting emails are from an outside recruiter working on Ripple’s behalf.