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Zipmex Unzips its Asia Director

The once-promising platform, which has been fighting to save itself from financial ruin, has faced yet another setback.

May 19, 2023

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It's Friday! You're almost free! No one is relishing in that feeling more than Zipmex Asia director Akalarp Yimwilai, who resigned from his post... Kind of.

If you haven't been keeping up to date with the crypto exchange's troubles, here's the lowdown: Zipmex halted withdrawals in July as it faced liquidity issues due to its exposure to failed crypto lenders Babel Finance and Celsius Network, and has been working on restructuring plans ever since. Over the past few weeks, Zipmex has been engaged in discussions with various investors in a bid to resolve its liquidity issues.

Unfortunately, despite some initial promising meetings, the exchange has been unable to secure the support it desperately needs, as reported on Thursday by DealStreetAsia. Five potential investors were in talks, including Asia-based BSQ Capital and a publicly-listed Thai company, both of which held the most potential. However, these discussions did not materialize into fruitful partnerships.

The resignation of Yimwilai, the director of Zipmex Asia, coupled with the company's admission that talks with potential investors are not making progress, raises serious concerns about the exchange's future.

Whilst Yimwilai won't serve as director of Zipmex Asia, he will still remain as director of its Thai unit, Zipmex Company.

This latest development compounds the challenges that Zipmex has faced on its tumultuous journey. The exchange has repeatedly sought extensions for its debt repayment timeline, reflecting the dire straits it finds itself in. The situation became even more precarious when a Singapore court approved a two-month extension to Zipmex's debt restructuring moratorium. These extensions were intended to provide the exchange with a lifeline, an opportunity to regroup and secure the necessary funds to continue operations.

However, the outlook now appears bleak.

Zipmex's struggles are not confined to failed investor talks. The exchange suffered a significant setback as V Ventures, its Thai buyout investor, cancelled a US$100 million deal to rescue the company and return customer funds. The company's directors now view the chance of resuscitating the deal as slim, further compounding the exchange's woes.

The specific causes behind Yimwilai's departure remain uncertain but Zipmex and Yimwilai were recently fined 11 million baht ($319,000) by the Thailand Securities and Exchange Commission for purported breaches of laws pertaining to digital asset trading. These regulatory hurdles only serve to exacerbate the exchange's predicament, creating additional obstacles in its quest for survival.

Zipmex now finds itself at a critical juncture. Time is running out, as the exchange must make substantial progress on its restructuring process by the end of June, aligning with the latest moratorium deadline. The clock is ticking, and the stakes couldn't be higher.

In other news:

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  • Binance Australia halted Aussie dollar deposits and withdrawals on Thursday afternoon, citing third-party issues. "We are working hard to find an alternative provider to continue offering AUD deposits and withdrawals to our users," Binance said in a statement.
  • Coinbase is diversifying its revenue streams beyond fees, launching its Coinbase One service, initially available to users in 35 countries including the US, UK, Germany, and Ireland, for US$29.99 monthly. The subscription offers various features such as zero trading charges, pre-filled tax return documents, and 24/7 customer support.
  • The dog is back! Dogecoin's daily transactions have hit record highs thanks to the newly created "DRC-20" standard, which allows for the creation of meme coins on the Dogecoin network. The newly created "Doginal" architecture is similar to Bitcoin’s BRC-20 ordinals, which allows arbitrary and non-financial data to be included in blocks.

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