Monday morning, popular cryptocurrency exchange Bitstamp announced that it had been bought by NXMH Holdings, the European subsidiary of South Korea’s NXC – the parent company of Korbit exchange.
Bitstamp Changes Hands
Luxembourg-based Bitstamp, one of the oldest Bitcoin exchanges in the world, has been acquired by NXMH Holdings, a Belgium-based investment firm and subsidiary of South Korea-based NXC, according to an announcement made by the company CEO early Monday morning.
ANNOUNCING: Bitstamp was acquired by Belgium-based investment company NXMH. Our team, leadership and vision all remain the same. We believe this is the logical next step on our mission to be the most trusted digital currency exchange on the market: https://t.co/UxjNpDeKNR pic.twitter.com/3MUoQtdXFn
— Bitstamp (@Bitstamp) October 29, 2018
NXC is the parent company of South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Korbit. The announcement did not mention the financial details of the deal, but the purchase amount is rumored to be around $400 Million according to Fortune.
Kodrič told the publication:
We were very much aligned – where we see the industry going and what the company wants to be. They’re willing to help us along the way and help us with our global expansion.
Bitstamp, which is among the leading exchanges in the world today, was co-founded by Nejc Kodrič in 2011. It is reported that he established the company with just 1000 Euros. The company has since raised around $14 Million in funding from investors like Pantera Capital. Currently, Bitstamp occupies the #40 spot on CoinMarketCap’s Top 100 cryptocurrency exchanges, with a 24-hour trade volume of just over $69 million.
In the announcement, Kodrič said:
Bitstamp has been regularly approached by suitors for quite some time. The reason why we finally decided to sell the company is a combination of the quality of the buyer, the quality of the offer and the fact that the industry is at a point where consolidation makes sense. A major factor in agreeing to the sale is that the mission, leadership, and vision of the company remain the same.
Revealing some details about the acquisition, Kodrič told Fortune that the NXMH had been one of four interested bidders and that the deal was sealed in December of last year. Apparently, it took most of this year for regulatory approvals to come through.
The Way Forward for Bitstamp
Kodrič will continue as Bitstamp’s CEO and will retain a 10% stake in the company. As for the company’s 180 employees and its customers, nothing is expected to change. As Kodrič noted:
We have kind of the same opinion as NXMH – why change something if it works perfectly well? [Bistamp] has been profitable from almost day one.
Speaking about the possibility of a merger with Korbit, Kodrič said that, while the platforms will share technology, there is no plan to merge the entities.
Kodrič also addressed any concerns that customers may have over the acquisition:
I want to assure you that Bitstamp remains Bitstamp. We will continue to innovate with the goal of giving our customers the absolute best trading experience. It is business as usual here. We do anticipate that this acquisition will strengthen Bitstamp’s positioning for growth, which will provide opportunities to better serve our customers. Customers should not have any concerns about their accounts or changes to the way we operate.
With blockchain and cryptocurrency firms having attained reasonably decent levels of valuation, the entrepreneurs behind these ventures are looking to cash out the equity they hold. As the industry continues to grow, we can expect more such mergers and acquisitions in the space.
What are your thoughts on the acquisition of Bitstamp? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock