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FEB 6, 2024

Thai SEC halts Zipmex operations amid financial concerns

by CoinNess Global

The Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a directive mandating Zipmex, a Singapore-based digital asset trading and brokerage platform, to temporarily suspend its operations.
This decision is driven by the SEC’s call for significant changes in Zipmex’s management structure and an improvement in its financial position. The regulator outlined that the cryptocurrency exchange can resume normal operations if it addresses these concerns.

15 days to rectify issues

In an official announcement last Friday, the SEC conveyed that Zipmex has a specified period of 15 days to rectify its financial position and operational deficiencies, aligning with the prior orders from the financial regulator. The SEC emphasizes that once the crypto exchange fulfills the regulator’s requirements, users should be able to resume fund withdrawals.
The securities watchdog had initially issued an order to Zipmex on Jan. 12, instructing the exchange to adjust the maintenance of its net liquid capital and modify its business administration structure and personnel to enhance efficiency and protect customer interests.
Anek Yooyuen, Deputy Secretary General of the SEC, explained the legal process involved, stating:
“According to the process specified by law, if the digital asset business operator is unable to comply with the SEC’s orders within the specified period, the SEC may propose that the Minister of Finance consider revoking the order.”

Implementation of robust system to protect investors

In addition to implementing the SEC’s orders regarding its financial operation and operational deficiencies, the exchange is required to establish a robust system protecting investors’ deposited assets against exploitation.
Once these objectives have been achieved within the required timeframe, Zipmex is obligated to submit a report on these implementations for SEC approval, paving the way for the resumption of operations. The Thai regulator stated that “Zipmex will be able to resume normal business operations upon receiving permission from the SEC.”

Longstanding regulatory scrutiny

Zipmex has been under the regulatory microscope since 2023, facing scrutiny following the company’s struggles off the back of the last crypto market downturn. The SEC’s investigation includes a probe into an acquisition by V Ventures and whether Zipmex operated in Thailand without regulatory approval. V Ventures canceled its $100 million buyout of the company in 2023, which would have included the return of customer deposits.
The Thoresen Thai Agencies subsidiary company deemed the entire deal terminated on the basis that Zipmex had not fulfilled its contractual obligations relative to the buyout. The platform suspended trading in November 2023, citing regulatory compliance as the reason.
Despite the operational suspension, user withdrawals will remain accessible to facilitate an exit from the platform. The initial freeze of withdrawals in July 2022 due to Terra’s ecosystem collapse, coupled with crypto lender bankruptcies, led Zipmex to seek court protection and legal assistance to raise capital for creditor payouts.
The platform presented a reorganization plan last year, proposing creditor payouts of up to 30 cents on the dollar, subject to asset recovery. However, the initial offer was set at 3.35 cents, with the potential for a higher repayment figure based on the firm’s eventual asset recovery.
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