China’s First Bitcoin Exchange BTCC Acquired by Hong Kong Investors, and Hong Kong Has Become a Hub for Cryptos
China’s first bitcoin exchange BTCC said on January 29 that it has been acquired by a Hong Kong-based blockchain investment fund following a heavy crackdown on the centralized exchanges in China last September.
The terms of this purchase have not been disclosed. The bitcoin exchange,however, reveals that they will now focus exclusively on the international market and its three major products — BTCC Pool, Mobi bitcoin wallet and USD Exchange, which will be led by Denver Zhao, Mark Ma, and Aaron Choi, respectively.
“Today’s acquisition is an incredible milestone for BTCC that validates all of our hard work over the past few years,” Bobby Lee, the co-founder of BTCC, said in a post on Weibo. “I’m very excited about the resources gives BTCC to move faster and aggressively grow our businesses in 2018 and beyond.”
BTCC is known as BTC China when it was founded in 2011 by Bobby Lee. It plays a leading role in various segments of the bitcoin ecosystem, from bitcoin mining to digital currency trading. According to BTCC, its mining pool ‘mined’ nearly 900 million dollars worth of bitcoin in 2017 , its bitcoin wallet which was launched last March has served customers from 183 countries and its exchange business traded over $25 billion in bitcoin last year.
“We now have the resources to more fully realize our vision of safeguarding and stabilizing digital currencies’ blockchains,” said Zhao, BTCC’s senior vice president of BTCC Mining Pool. “Going forward, we’ll provide better, fairer, more transparent, and more comprehensive mining services to our customers worldwide.”
After Chinese authorities continue to escalate their crackdown on crypto trading and ICO activities, more and more China’s blockchain startups, exchanges and miners move abroad. Huobi and OKCoin—the other two of the country’s “Big Three” exchanges—have relocated their business to Hong Kong in late 2017 as well.
On the same day, the financial regulator in Hong Kong voiced concern over rampant ICO fundraising. Leung Fung-yee, executive director of the intermediaries division of Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), said at a press conference that SFC has ordered a number of bitcoin exchanges to ‘delist ’ those ICO tokens which may be classified as securities.
Though Hong Kong will not ban digital currencies trading, but would educate citizens about the risks of such investments. Hong Kong has become a new hub for cryptocurrencies.