Exmo, a crypto exchange linked to Russia, would no longer accept users from Russia, Belarus, or Kazakhstan.
Exmo, a cryptocurrency trading platform based in London, is the latest crypto trading firm to formally cease its operations in Russia and Belarus as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Exmo said on Monday that it is selling its digital asset business in Russia and Belarus to a Russian software development company. The new owner and the size of the deal were not disclosed at the time of writing.
“Unfortunately, we can no longer hold the high-risk component of the business,” Exmo CEO Serhii Zhdanov stated. “A worldwide firm does not want to put its global expansion plans at danger by having such high-risk areas in its structure.”
According to Zhdanov, the acquisition includes Exmo’s client accounts in Russia and Belarus, as well as local fiat onramp systems. The platform’s technical code is not for sale and is solely controlled by the Exmo organization. Exmo’s ultimate beneficial owner, Eduard Bark, is also quitting the company and transferring his interest to Zhdanov as part of the arrangement.
Exmo’s business in Kazakhstan is included in the deal, in addition to Russia and Belarus, because the new owner’s team is situated in Kazakhstan. According to the CEO, the anonymous buyer controls a Russian software development firm as well as a Kazakhstan-based legal entity for a cryptocurrency exchange.
“We’ve put a lot of work into the Russian side of the business, so we’ve made sure it’s in good hands now.” The new owner will not only follow the plan we defined before, but will also make it much easier for us to reach new heights. “We made this choice in the best interests of both parties,” Zhdanov explained. Due to sanctions imposed in mid-March, the company stated that it will neither penalize regular consumers nor block any accounts.
Exmo has revised its user agreement to reflect that Russian, Belarusian, and Kazakh people would no longer be onboarded on its platform as part of its withdrawal from Russia and Belarus. On Friday, the exchange halted trading pairings in Russian rubles.
“A substantial part of our business was located in Russia,” Zhdanov said, “and our removal from Russia will have a significant influence on the exchange.” We will lose over 30% of our revenue. However, we are confident that it will accelerate our exponential growth and allow the company to become a unicorn in the next three years in the long run.”
“When Russia is no longer classed as a high-risk country,” Zhdanov said, “we would consider returning.” The announcement comes after Belarus-based crypto exchange Currency.com declared last week that it was ceasing operations in Russia.
Some prominent cryptocurrency exchanges, such as Binance, continue to operate in Russia, opting to comply with sanctions imposed on specific sanctioned individuals rather than entire countries.