The London-based cryptocurrency exchange, Exmo, has announced its suspension of operation in Russia and Belarus due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
On April 18, Exmo announced that it is selling parts of its digital assets in Russia and Belarus to a Russia-based software improvement firm; as of writing this, the new owner and the size of the brand is yet to be disclosed.
“Unfortunately, we can’t anymore hold the high-risk part of the business, since a global group does not want to put the global expansion plans at any risk by keeping such high-risk markets in its structure,” Exmo CEO Serhii Zhdanov told Cointelegraph.
The deal comprises Exmo’s client account in Russia and Belarus as well as fiat onramp system, according to Zhdanov. The technical code is excluded in the deal and is owned entirely by the platform.
Included in the deal is Eduard Bark, the ultimate beneficial owner who is said to be leaving the company. He will transfer his stake to Zhdanov.
Aside from Russia and Belarus, the deal also includes the company’s enterprise in Kazakhstan. This is because the new owner’s team is based in Kazakhstan. The undisclosed owner is reportedly the owner of the Russian software development company and Kazakhstan legal entity for a crypto exchange.
“We’ve put a lot of effort into the Russian part of the business, so we’ve made sure that now it’s in good hands. The new owner not only follows the roadmap that we’ve created earlier but will get to the new heights much easier. We’ve made this decision for the benefit of both sides,” Zhdanov said.
The firm said it would not sanction regular people or block any accounts due to sanctions in mid-march.
In addition to Exmo’s exit from Russia and Belarus, the company has changed its user agreement; right now, users from Russia, Belarus, and Kazakh are no longer on board in the platform. Exmo has disabled Russian ruble trading pairs since Friday.
Exmo is a major crypto exchange founded by Russian entrepreneurs Ivan Petuhovski and Pavel Lerner in 2013. The firm’s exit from Russia will have a significant impact on the exchange because Russia is the exchange’s major market, as admitted by Zhdanov; he explained this by saying:
“A significant part of our business was located in Russia. We will experience a near 30% revenue decrease. However, in the long run, we are sure that it will speed up our exponential growth and let the company become a unicorn in the next three years.”
He said the exchange would consider returning to Russia when the country is no longer classified as a high-risk country.
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