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Thai SEC approves four crypto companies despite Zipmex woes

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Thailand’s financial regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has approved four more crypto companies in the Kingdom.

On August 4, local media reported that the SEC had granted operating licenses to four more digital asset operators.

These include Krungthai XSpring, a crypto broker affiliated with one of the country’s leading banks, and crypto exchange T-BOX Thailand. Also winning regulatory approval was crypto advisor and fund manager Coindee and Leif Capital Asset Management, which also manages funds.

However, the four companies have yet to start operations, as the regulator has yet to inspect their operations.

Thailand now has 21 fully regulated digital asset operators comprising nine exchanges, nine brokers and three fund managers. Thailand’s military-backed government has been largely tolerant of cryptocurrencies, despite the central bank’s efforts to restrict them.

The report noted that another major player is waiting to enter the fast-growing Thai crypto market. Gulf Innova and Binance Capital Management aim to launch the joint crypto exchange and brokerage “Gulf Binance”.

Crypto volumes in Thailand rose nearly 600% in early 2021 as the bull market gained momentum.

Related: After Weeks of Rumors, Thai Crypto Exchange Zipmex Files for Singapore Debt Relief

The move comes amid unrest over Singapore’s Zipmex exchange, which also operates in Thailand. Late last month, Zipmex Thailand suspended withdrawals for customers in the country using their ‘Z Wallet’. Shortly thereafter, the SEC launched a hotline for Zipmex customers to file details of their losses.

On August 1, the SEC launched an investigation into Zipmex, alleging that the company may have violated trading rules by suspending withdrawals. It stated that the company cited inadequate reasons for such actions, such as “market fluctuations.”

The regulator ordered the company to resume trading activities, and by August 3, Zipmex had resumed withdrawals for Solana (SOL) and Ripple (XRP) the following day, as reported by UKTN. Withdrawals from larger assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum will remain suspended, as will withdrawals from the ZipUp+ service.

On August 4, the company tweeted that it was determined to resume all services as soon as possible.

Zipmex got caught up in this year’s crypto contagion due to its exposure to Celsius and Babel Finance. On Aug. 3, Zipmex Thailand CEO Akalarp Yimwilai said the Singapore parent company had injected $5 million to offset Celsius’s losses.

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