HomeTechnology & InnovationStablecoins become defacto form of compensation for many Web3 companies
By Mayank Sharma
September 8, 2022 9:47 am

Stablecoins become defacto form of compensation for many Web3 companies

Highly skilled crypto engineers command the best salaries
Stablecoins (Image credit: Pyments)

A recent report takes a deep dive into compensation trends among venture-backed cryptocurrency startups. Crunching the numbers it finds that about 50 percent of the companies outside the US use cryptos, particularly stablecoins like the dollar-pegged USD Coin (USDC), as the primary form of payment.

Prepared by crypto venture capital firm Framework Ventures, the report says that an overwhelming majority of companies (over 80 percent) that are headquartered in the US prefer compensating their employees in US Dollars.

Interestingly, it suggested that the use of fiat currency could perhaps be because it helps facilitate employee benefits that would simply not be possible with cryptos.

“However, these companies typically still offer USDC as an option for contractors, and may sometimes (though rarely) have full-time employees that are paid in USDC,” added the report.

On the other hand, it’s a totally different ball game outside the US. According to Framework Ventures, 56 percent of the non-US companies surveyed had no qualms about offering stablecoins as the primary payment option, with virtually all of them offering payment in USDC.

Another interesting trend is the use of both equity in the company, and tokens to allow employees to participate in the networks, as incentives. The report finds that the use of both is fairly prevalent across the surveyed companies, but the actual distribution varies greatly.

The one trend they did pick up in the distribution is that companies based in the US were far less willing to offer tokens to their employees as a form of equity payment, even as more than 25 percent of the non-US companies offer tokens to their employees.

In terms of actual income, the report notes that US employees had an edge over their international peers. The median pay for a crypto engineer based in the US is $150,000, while the global average is $125,000. However, the survey is quick to add that highly experienced engineers commanded the best salaries regardless of their location.

The report is based on the anonymized survey of 18 companies that Framework Ventures has invested in. While the data sample is small, the diverse nature of the companies, which vary in size from two to 80 employees and include DeFi, infrastructure, and web3 gaming companies, could perhaps point to a larger industry trend.