Exmo, a cryptocurrency trading platform based in London, is the latest crypto trading platform to formally suspend 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 said. “A worldwide firm does not want to put its global expansion plans at risk by having such high-risk markets 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 purchase, in addition to Russia and Belarus, because the new owner’s team is situated in Kazakhstan. According to the CEO, the unnamed 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 exits Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan
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.
Exmo is a significant cryptocurrency exchange that was launched in 2013 by Russian entrepreneurs Ivan Petuhovski and Pavel Lerner. The firm’s exit from Russia, which was one of its primary markets, will have a big influence on the exchange, according to Zhdanov, who stated:
“A significant part of our business was located in Russia. We will experience a near 30% revenue decrease. However, in the long run we are sure that it will speed up our exponential growth and let the company become a unicorn in the next three years.”
“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.