In June this year, the digital currency exchange, Coinbase announced their plans of entering the market of Japan. However, almost four months later the company hasn’t stepped into the market or made any disclosures regarding the same. Recently, the Chief Policy Officer (CPO) of Mike Lempres spoke to the Nikkei Asian Review to discuss their impending entry into the Japnese market. Commenting on the strict and somewhat laborious regulations of the country in regards to cryptocurrency, he says that they are “Good for us”.
In their initial announcement, the leading startups in the crypto industry disclosed that the startup’s Japan-based branch will be head by Nao Kitazawa, formerly of financial industry giant Morgan Stanley. Kitazawa as CEO will play a key role in Coinbase’s expansion into the Asian market, majorly due to his expertise in both the financial and technology worlds. The announcement Tweet stated:
We're excited to announce that Coinbase is coming to Japan! ??
— Coinbase (@coinbase) June 4, 2018
While welcoming for all things cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, Japan has managed to maintain an air of caution to avoid fraudulent incidences. The financial authority body, the Financial Services Agency (FSA) exercise a heavy-hand while considering approval and regulating exchanges. The rules do not differ for well-established names in this industry, the strict attitude is the same as that of experienced by the Japan-based exchanges over the past decade.
When Lempres elaborated the future plans on Nikkei Asian Review, he did note that “the Japanese government is more focused on security… that is good for us.” He further states that the firm is making good headway in terms of obtaining a license with the FSA, the talented individuals at Coinbase are “committed” to earn a approval by 2019. Though a likely timeline wasn’t disclosed by the executive.
The San Francisco-based startup has a reputation as one of the most secure crypto platforms, this status likely aid them to secure an official FSA digital asset platform license. Lempres reveals that the security is boasted as more than 99% of crypto holdings are held in well-secured cold wallet solutions. The “hot wallets,” susceptible to attacks from third-party hackers contain only 1% of funds. Even this 1% is highly secured to avail peace of mind for their investors.
He also notes that the rapidly expanding Coinbase team, remain optimistic, stating:
Japan has been an active large market from the very beginning, and has proved resilient as it bounces back from several bad experiences. We think there is great demand for a trusted provider of services here.
Fueling their optimism is a recent comment from FSA Commissioner Toshihide Endo, who stated that the governmental agency doesn’t want to curb the development and maturation of the local cryptocurrency space.