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BitFlyer acquires FTX Japan, intends to revamp exchange into crypto custodial firm BitFlyer acquires FTX Japan, intends to revamp exchange into crypto custodial firm

BitFlyer acquires FTX Japan, intends to revamp exchange into crypto custodial firm

BitFlyer said it will reboot FTX Japan as a digital asset custodial firm targeted at institutional investors

BitFlyer acquires FTX Japan, intends to revamp exchange into crypto custodial firm

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate. Image includes combined content which may include AI-generated content.

BitFlyer, one of Japan’s largest crypto exchanges, agreed to acquire the Japanese subsidiary of FTX, the defunct crypto exchange founded by the convicted Sam Bankman-Fried.

FTX Japan was among the several companies impacted by FTX’s collapse in November 2022. Despite the turmoil, FTX Japan maintained that its customers’ assets were separate from FTX’s bankruptcy estate and has repaid its customers as of February 2023.

Crypto custodial move

According to a June 20 statement, bitFlyer aims to reboot FTX Japan as a digital asset custodial firm targeted at institutional investors. It stated:

“[The Company] will provide services related to crypto asset spot ETFs, centered around its core business, if the legal system is established in the future in Japan. [The Company] will continuously maintain the crypto asset exchange service provider and Type 1 financial instruments business license depending on the situation.”

BitFlyer noted that the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the US has increased institutional investors’ entry into the crypto asset market, which needsย professional custodial services. It stated:

“Although the [ETF] situation is not necessarily the same in the U.S. and Japan, this trend is expected to increase the need for institutional investors to enter the crypto asset market in Japan, and crypto asset custody services are expected to become more important.”

Following the introduction of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the US, there is speculation that several Asian regulators might follow suit. Hong Kong has already launched crypto ETFs, but Japan is cautious about overcoming the regulatory hurdles for these products.

Nevertheless, BitFlyer said the company would offer services tailored to the needs of financial institutions, including trust banks if Japan establishes a legal framework that supports crypto asset spot ETFs.

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