Nigeria’s pioneer bitcoin exchange Paxful shuts down

Bisola David
Bisola David
Nigeria's pioneer bitcoin exchange Paxful shuts down

Pioneer Nigerian peer-to-peer Bitcoin exchange, Paxful has announced its closure.

According to Nairametrics, this was disclosed by the founder and CEO of Paxful, Ray Youssef, who said that the decision was made because of “significant staff exits” and the regulatory environment.

“We don’t know if it will return”, Youssef wrote. After he declared that all customer cash had been accounted for; Also, he explained that customers were asked to withdraw their money.

The firm also provided links to other platforms that non-U.S. users should switch to.

Findings revealed that Nigerians transacted more than $1.16 billion in cryptocurrency on Paxful between January 2021 and June 2022 as a result of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s prohibition on cryptocurrency trading through Nigerian banks.

Paxful shut down the ether trading market in December as a result of the network switching from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake. Since then, the platform has solely exchanged bitcoin.

Paxful is the only Peer – to – peer exchange that has made its data public and well known, despite the fact that there are other Peer – to – peer players in Nigeria.

Youssef said during a Twitter Space event that the Crypto trading platform was an American company that catered to a global clientele with a focus on the global south. He asserted that “a fifth of the corporation was compliance personnel,” adding that even it wasn’t enough to satisfy Uncle Sam.

Youssef revealed corporate strategies that raised regulatory issues in the US, like using gift cards to join people in Africa without bank accounts. Blocking American consumers and continuing business “would have been an option if we had the staff. Business-wise, that doesn’t make sense,” Youssef said.

Youssef and Jude Chidi Ogene were identified as defendants in a lawsuit filed against the company in January by co-founder and former COO Artur Schaback, who also designated the firm as a defendant. The complaint was filed against the company due to problems with employee turnover.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Ogene was Paxful’s top legal officer up until March. The complaint was sealed in that case.

On March 29, Paxful announced that it will “in the next days” repay any money that customers of its Earn program had invested in Celsius as a result of that company’s insolvency.

Remember that LocalBitcoins also announced formally on February 9 that it was halting operations as a result of the difficult market conditions brought on by the ongoing bitcoin winter. After serving customers for more than ten years, LocalBitcoins, a peer-to-peer Bitcoin platform with headquarters in Finland, has stopped operating.

The CEO of LocalBitcoins, said: “We have sadly determined that LocalBitcoins can no longer provide its Bitcoin trading service, despite our endeavors to overcome obstacles and turn around our dwindling market share and transaction volumes.”

50 people were working for the LocalBitcoins team at the time of the announcement.

LocalBitcoins advised all customers to remove their Bitcoin holdings from the service and their LocalBitcoins wallets. According to the press release, users can withdraw Bitcoin from LocalBitcoins for a whole year.

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