Is a Coincheck buyout in the works?
While the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange declined to comment at the moment, recent reports have surfaced saying that another Japanese group is now eyeing to buy the trading platform.
The Monex Group was identified to be the interested party in a Nikkei Asian Review report. While no exact figure has been revealed the report hinted that the Japanese online broker is willing to buy several billion yen in exchange for majority control of Coincheck.
Apparently, Monex in interested in rebuilding the crypto trading company, which is currently under its supervision. In addition, the deal could also likely involve a change in Coincheck’s management team.
For instance, the report stated that Coincheck’s president and founder Koichiro Wada is likely to step down once the deal is in place and the Monex Group assumes majority ownership of the exchange. Another Coincheck official expected to step down is Yusuke Otsuka, its CEO. However, the report did not give details on the identities of the new president as well as the other top executives that will be replacing the crypto exchange’s old guard.
Just how big is Coincheck at the moment? While no estimates are currently available, what comes to mind if someone mentions the Japanese exchange is the shocking theft earlier this year where the company lost around $530 million worth of digital assets.
Both companies will need the approval of FSA as well as the nod of both their shareholders for the deal to push through. With the Coincheck heist still fresh in its mind, FSA will have to decide if a Monex-controlled exchange will improve its risk management practices. While a Coincheck representative clarified that they had not made such announcement, other sources say that the deal will likely be announced officially to the public later this week.
If the acquisition pushes through, it will allow the Monex Group to enter the cryptocurrency business instantly. Apparently, the group has been eyeing the fast-growing sector for a while now. However, the high-profile Coincheck theft had delayed their plans when Japanese regulators started tightening rules in its aftermath.
Not only will the buyout fast-track the Monex Group’s plans to join the crypto business but it will also give them access to the horde of Coincheck customers. The cryptocurrency exchange’s customer base ballooned last year along with the crypto sector’s rapid growth in the same period.
Reacting to the possible buyout, Monex shares surged by 23 percent to 424 yen, which could be the market’s nod to the company’s rumored plans of entering the crypto markets and, by extension, the general market’s optimism for the cryptocurrency market as a whole. In addition, the deal could mean the company’s easier and quicker entry to the sector since it would also give Monex instant access to Coincheck’s tried and tested information systems.
Coinchecks’ $530 million heists was reported to be the biggest digital theft ever. It prompted Japans’ Financial Services Agency to seek better risk management systems and preventing criminal activities that involve digital assets. As a result, Japan became the first to regulate cryptocurrencies by mandating exchanges to register.