Coinbase shuts down operations in Japan amid crypto winter

Key Takeaways

  • Coinbase Japan users will have until February 16, 2023 to withdraw their fiat and crypto holdings from the platform.
  • After February 16, the remaining crypto assets held by Coinbase Japan users will be converted to Japanese yen.

Leading crypto exchange Coinbase has announced the shutting down of its operation in Japan owing to unfavorable market conditions. As per the official announcement, Coinbase Japan users will have until February 16, 2023, to withdraw their fiat and crypto holdings from the platform.

After February 16, the remaining crypto assets held by Coinbase Japan users will be converted to Japanese yen. The crypto exchange also added that fiat deposit functionality would be removed on January 20, 2023, JST.

Coinbase emphasized that it is committed to ensuring that all its customers can withdraw their assets at their earliest convenience.

“In the month following February 17, Coinbase will send any remaining JPY to a Guaranty Account at the Legal Affairs Bureau in accordance with legal requirements. If customers do not take any action before February 16, they will have to coordinate with the Legal Affairs Bureau to retrieve their JPY balance,” the official announcement reads.

Coinbase Japan customers are given the option to withdraw their crypto holdings to any other Virtual Assets Service Provider, Coinbase Wallet, or any other self-hosted wallet of their choice. Further, they are also provided with the choice to liquidate their portfolio and later withdraw their JPY to a domestic bank account, Coinbase noted.

Coinbase is, however, not the first crypto firm in recent months to halt its operations in Japan. In late 2022 San-Francisco, headquartered crypto exchange Kraken decided to pull its operations in Japan, citing a strain on its resources amid a “weak crypto market.”

Coinbase is currently navigating its way through crypto winter while trying to cut costs. As part of the restructuring plan to reduce operating costs, the crypto exchange expects to spend around 149 million to $163 million, including $58 million to $68 million in cash charges related to employee severance and other termination benefits.

The latest development comes days after the exchange announced the layoff of 950 jobs as part of the firm’s efforts to reduce operating costs by around 25% amid the ongoing crypto winter. This was Coinbase’s second layoff in recent months. In June 2022, Coinbase had initially reduced its headcount by 18%, citing volatile market conditions and economic recession.

Saniya Raahath
Saniya Raahath

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