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Startup investor and plastic surgeon Kim Byung-gun is nearing the purchase of Bithumb, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges of the world. The company aims to increase the potential of the exchange by using blockchain-based settlement system and by a stablecoin operation.
Majority Stakeholder Gets Acquired
Kim’s investment group, BK Global Consortium, signed a deal to purchase 50 percent plus one share of BTC Holding Company. BTC Holding Co. is the majority stakeholder of Bithumb.
According to a spokesperson from Bithumb, the signed deal is worth around 400 billion won (352 million USD). Previously BK Global Consortium was the fifth largest investor and shareholder of BTC Holding.
South Korea was one of the most active markets for cryptocurrencies in 2017. After the highs of 2017, most of the digital coins have lost a significant amount of value, and the “gold rush” is somewhat subdued. The crypto market in South Korea did not observe any extravagant acquisitions in 2018; however, Kim’s move on Bithumb is one of the most significant exceptions. This lack of growth comes after the Korean government has banned initial coin offerings. The government of South Korea will decide whether ICOs are legal in November 2018.
According to CoinMarketCap.com, Bithumb is the largest crypto exchange in the world by (reported) trading value. The exchange posted 218.6 billion won (193 million USD) worth of operating profit and 39.3 billion won (34.7 million USD) of net income in the first half of 2018.
According to a spokesperson speaking on behalf of BK Global Consortium stated:
“E-commerce companies such as Amazon and Alibaba are receiving large commission fees, which have become an issue for consumers. Blockchain payment systems can reduce those commission fees.”
Kim’s ‘Bithumb Dex’ Ambition
Kim is planning to purchase shares from 10 shareholders, and the deal is set to be finalized in December 2018. Kim is also aiming to open ‘Bithumb Dex’ via his Hong Kong subsidiary in October 2018. According to Kim, the services are going to enable users around the world to send and receive digital currency with ease. Bithumb Dex will also solve a majority of hacking problems that are rampant in Korean exchanges.
“Kim Byung-gun demonstrated his multinational management ability in the field of medical care, fintech, and blockchain in Singapore. He is the right person to pursue the systemization and globalization of the virtual currency exchange.”
The deal is already signed, but the transaction will complete in February, according to the spokesperson. The contract is going to help Bithumb’s ability to develop blockchain technologies. BK Global Consortium is expected to facilitate further developments as well.