The Thai SEC suggests revoking the license of the struggling exchange Zipmex.

On February 23, the Securities and Exchange Commission Board of Thailand (SEC) made an announcement regarding the recommendation to the Finance Ministry to revoke the digital asset business license of the troubled crypto exchange, Zipmex. This development marks the latest in a series of setbacks for the exchange in Thailand.

During a meeting held on February 21, the SEC also decided to extend Zipmex’s business suspension, which was initially imposed on February 1. Clients are permitted to request the return of their assets from the exchange until March 11. Following this deadline, Zipmex will be mandated to transfer any unclaimed assets to a “trusted and secured system” and report this action to the SEC.

“Even after the effective revocation of its license, Zipmex retains its status as a limited company with corresponding rights, responsibilities and liabilities, including the possibility of being subject to legal action.”

Following Zipmex’s failure to meet the deadline for enhancing its net capital and enhancing its personnel and management structure, which the SEC deemed “inappropriate and insufficient,” this action was taken. On February 1, Zipmex was given a 15-day ultimatum by the SEC. Consequently, business operations were mandated to be suspended. Additionally, on February 8, the SEC announced corruption charges against former Zipmex CEO Akalarp Yimwilai.

Troubles for the Exchange: A Timeline of Challenges

In 2022, the exchange encountered difficulties that started on July 20. During this period, it halted withdrawals for several weeks due to apprehensions regarding its association with crypto lenders Babel and Celsius, both of which were confronting bankruptcy issues. Although Zipmex reinstated access to Trade Wallets after three days, its Z Wallets remained inaccessible well into the subsequent year.

In 2022, Coinbase made an initial attempt to acquire Zipmex, although this effort was ultimately unsuccessful. Instead, Coinbase opted for a “strategic investment,” the specific amount of which was not disclosed. However, despite this investment, Coinbase did not emerge as one of Zipmex’s top three investors, according to a report released in August of that year.

On July 27, 2022, Zipmex took the step of filing for debt relief in Singapore. Following this, in September 2022, the SEC recommended police intervention against Zipmex due to its failure to provide necessary information in accordance with the country’s Digital Assets Act. Subsequently, in January of the following year, Zipmex faced further scrutiny from the SEC as it was in the process of being acquired by Thai investors from V Ventures. However, this acquisition deal also fell through.

Zipmex was granted a license by the SEC in January 2020, allowing it to operate in Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, and Australia.


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