Bitcoins on Hong Kong and Japan flag background

Hong Kong’s Amber Group to reportedly acquire DeCurret exchange in Japan

A Hong Kong-based digital currency services firm is set to purchase DeCurret, a Japanese digital currency exchange that launched with much fanfare but has failed to meet expectations. Amber Group will become the latest Chinese firm to purchase a Japanese exchange, following Huobi Global’s 2018 takeover of BitTrade exchange.

DeCurret Holdings, the exchange’s holding company, established in December 2021, will sell the exchange arm of its business for millions of dollars, local newspaper Nikkei reports. The exact figure wasn’t revealed in the report.

DeCurret Holdings will now focus on its digital asset business, which is separate from the exchange business in Japan. 

If it goes through, the sale comes almost three years since the Financial Services Agency issued an operating license to DeCurret. At the time, the founders were confident that they would break through the Japanese virtual assets market and carve out a market share for themselves. 

As reported by CoinGeek in 2019, “DeCurret aims to become a significant financial servicer for crypto assets, setting a standard for highly secure and convenient digital currency trading.”

Since then, it has attracted backing from the country’s three largest banks, financial services consortium SBI Group and gaming giant Konami Holdings. It has also been involved in many significant moves in the local market, such as the formation of a 70-member consortium seeking to launch a yen-based digital currency. 

DeCurret also partnered with Toyota when the automotive giant delved into digital currencies. However, according to Nikkei, the digital currency exchange business didn’t prove to be fruitful for DeCurret, and it has failed to generate enough revenue as it fell behind established players like bitFlyer and Coincheck.

Amber Group is a Hong Kong-based entity founded in 2017 and whose growth in that time has been meteoric. In June last year, it raised $100 million in Series B at a $1 billion valuation. At the time, it claimed to have over $1 billion in assets under management and accounted for up to 3% of the global spot trading volume.

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