Crypto Exchange Kraken leaves Japan for second time, cites “poor crypto market”

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Key Takeaways:

  • Kraken has decided to stop doing business in Japan once again.
  • According to the exchange, Kraken’s decision to reduce spending was driven by a drop in trading activity.

Leading cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has chosen to end operations in Japan for a second time due to a “bad crypto market.”

Kraken stated in a blog post that it has decided to discontinue doing business in Japan and deregister with the Financial Services Agency by January 31, 2023, as part of efforts to “prioritize resources” and investments. Kraken said:

“Current market conditions in Japan, in combination with a weak crypto market globally, mean the resources needed to further grow our business in Japan aren’t justified at this time. As a result, Kraken will no longer service clients in Japan through Payward Asia.” 

The same subsidiary company worked in Japan from 2014 to 2018 before departing in April 2018 to better focus its efforts on growth in “other geographical places.”

The subsidiary chose to relaunch in October 2020 with a Tokyo headquarters and future expansion goals, providing spot trading on five critical assets. In addition, Kraken has committed to allow all impacted clients to withdraw their money from the exchange by January 31 at the latest, following the conclusion of the second round.

Users can move their cryptocurrency assets to an external wallet or convert them to Japanese yen before transferring them to a local bank account. In addition to removing withdrawal restrictions in January, a procedure will soon be disclosed that will enable users to reclaim their staked Ether (ETH).

Deposits will stop being available on January 9. However, trading will continue to be available. Kraken has made cutting costs a priority recently.

Kraken’s affiliate Payward Asia Inc. manages the exchange it provides to Japanese consumers. On Nov. 30, Kraken said that, in light of challenging market conditions, it had taken one of its “hardest decisions” to reduce its worldwide staff by about 1,100 workers, or 30% of its personnel.

The exchange stated that Kraken’s decision to cut expenditures was influenced by decreased trading activity and a fall in new user registrations and that these modifications were necessary “to support the firm for the long run.”

The most recent announcement also said that the company’s overall operations in the Japanese language version would not be significantly impacted by Kraken’s exit from the Japanese market.

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