Bittrex Global is following in the footsteps of its US arm, which shut down a few months ago, the crypto exchange posted on its homepage. All trading on Bittrex will cease on Dec. 4. The company urged its users to close any pending transactions by that date, as only withdrawals will be possible after that. The exchange, which is regulated in Bermuda and Lichtenstein, did not explain its decision.
The company stated:
It is with great regret that we announce Bittrex Global has decided to wind down its operations. We understand that this news may raise concerns and questions, and we want to assure you that we are committed to facilitating a smooth and transparent wind-down process during this period.
Did the SEC cause its collapse?
In August, Bittrex agreed to pay a fine of $24 million to settle charges brought against it by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). In its lawsuit, SEC accused Bittrex of selling US investors unregistered securities.
Exchange had liabilities of $1B in bankruptcy filing
Bittrex filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the District of Delaware in May, at which time the exchange estimated its assets and liabilities at $500 million resp. $1 billion. It also had more than 100,000 creditors, it emerged during bankruptcy proceedings.
The insolvency extended to several entities, including two in Malta and one in Seattle.
A series of crypto bankruptcies shook the market
Bittrex joins a long line of insolvent crypto platforms, including once-leading crypto exchange FTX and lenders Celsius and Genesis. Not all have fared so badly, though. Crypto lender BlockFi started repaying its creditors following its high-profile bankruptcy, from which it is recovering.
BlockFi’s recovery from bankruptcy means it can try to regain funds from its debtors, such as FTX and Three Arrows Capital, which is also bankrupt.