- Users have until February 16 to withdraw their assets from the exchange or risk legal headaches.
- Coinbase will close fiat deposits by January 20 as the company winds down operations in Japan.
- The news follows three separate staff cuts with over 2,000 employees fired from the company due to market conditions.
Major crypto exchange Coinbase announced a “difficult decision” to shut down its operations in Japan due to harsh market conditions hitting the crypto ecosystem and the broader financial industry.
The company initially disclosed plans to tap the Japanese market in 2016, before later teaming up with the global giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group to realize its plans in 2021.
Now the exchange advised users to withdraw their crypto from the exchange roughly two years after launching services for the crypto market in Japan. According to Wednesday’s announcement, local account holders have until February 16 to withdraw their digital assets in either crypto or fiat currency.
Assets on the exchange after February 17 will be converted to Japanese Yen (JPY) and users with active balances will have to engage the Legal Affairs Bureau for a resolution, Coinbase said. Also, the option to deposit fiat on the exchange will be disabled by January 20.
Any remaining crypto holdings held on Coinbase on or after February 17th will be converted to JPY. In the month following February 17th, Coinbase will send any remaining JPY to a Guaranty Account at the Legal Affairs Bureau in accordance with legal requirements. If customers do not take any action before February 16th, they will have to coordinate with the Legal Affairs Bureau to retrieve their JPY balance.
Coinbase Rocked By Layoffs
Indeed, Coinbase announced another round of staff cuts in early January 2023 as the crypto exchange doubled down to survive the crypto blizzard. The company effectively fired over 2,000 workers since 2022 and rescinded job offers in some cases.
The broader crypto ecosystem was shaken by several industry failures like Terra and FTX which drove down asset prices across the board. Other crypto entities like Kraken and Gemini also reduced their workforce to manage resources.
However, beaten crypto prices and industry shakedowns did little to deter Cathie Wood’s Ark Invest from backing Coinbase. The investment giant deployed $5.8 million to purchase more COIN stock, bringing the company’s portfolio to a staggering 8.7 million shares.