Cryptocurrency exchange company Kraken has announced its decision to close down its operations in Japan. The crypto industry is currently in a state of decline.
“After careful consideration, we have decided to de-register with the Japanese Financial Services Agency and cease operations in Japan on January 31, 2023,” Kraken said in a blog post published on Wednesday in both Japanese and English. “The decision is part of our effort to focus on areas that are in line with our strategy, and will benefit us in the long term.”
Kraken also stated in the blog post that it believes its business cannot progress due to poor market conditions and weak crypto markets in Japan. Furthermore, the company informed customers that its customer service through Payward Asia would be suspended.
“We value the trust our customers have placed in us, and we will do our best to make the transition as easy as possible for you,” the company stated in its statement. “That’s why we are committed to ensuring a smooth transition, and hope the information in this email will help you make the best decision.”
“Kraken is prepared to ensure that all affected customers can withdraw their assets in a timely manner,” the statement concluded.
This announcement comes as the high-profile bankruptcy of cryptocurrency exchange FTX was filed last month, leaving many concerned with the future of digital currency markets.
Bahamian authorities arrested FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried earlier this month after US officials informed him that he was facing charges. He is accused of using consumer funds to finance Alameda Research and using other people’s names to donate to political campaigns.
Bankman-Fried is facing multiple charges, including money laundering and wire fraud. He was arrested in the Bahamas last week and the following day was granted a $250 million bail and is currently living with his parents in Palo Alto, California. He appeared in court before his trial and the agreement includes an electronic monitoring bracelet.