OKCoin, one of the oldest and largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, has two branches: one (OKCoin.cn) based in Beijing for Chinese citizens, and one (OKCoin.com) based in Hong Kong for non-Chinese citizens. On Tuesday (June 4), the latter announced that it has now expanded to Europe, and opened an office in Malta (the “Blockchain Island”).
OKCoin, which was founded in 2013, has millions of users in more than 100 countries around the world. It provides its customers with a fiat-to-crypto trading platform for major cryptoassets including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC), and Ethereum Classic (ETC).
OKCoin is a member of the OK Group, which also includes OKEx, OKLink, OK Blockchain Capital, and OK Blockchain Research Center.
Expansion of Sevices to the United States
On 13 July 2018, OKCoin made an official announcement regarding the expansion of its crypto trading services to the United States. More specifically, it said that it was “open for trading in California.” It offered U.S. dollar deposits and withdrawals, and said that it was “fully compliant with applicable US regulations.” Initially, the support trading pairs were: BTC/USD, LTC/USD, ETH/USD, BCH/USD, and ETC/USD.
OKCoin USA Inc.’s office is in San Francisco.
This announcement also gave us a hint of OKCoin’s ambitions for rapid global expansion: “The launch of the services in the United States is an important milestone in OKCoin’s globalization journey.”
Then, on 12 September 2018, OKCoin announced that “California was just the beginning,” and that it was expanding into “20 new states with token-to-token trading.” The new states included Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin.
Tim Byun, the OKCoin CEO, stated at the time:
“In order for the cryptocurrency market to reach its full potential, exchanges like OKCoin have to work with existing and new regulators for convertible virtual currency, digital goods, and/or securities,” said Tim Byun, OKCoin CEO. “Our team has worked diligently within the complexities of the US regulatory frameworks. We’re excited to take this major step forward as we aim to break down the barriers preventing a truly global digital asset market while adhering to long established regulations.”
Furthermore, OKCoin said that it was “applying for money transmittal licenses (MTL) for both token-to-token and fiat-to-token trading,” and that it would “open up trading in additional states” once it obtained “either an MTL or clarity that token-to-token trading is permissible.”
Expansion of Services to Europe
On Tuesday (June 4), OKCoin said that it had taken another major step toward its goal of making “digital assets accessible to the world” by expanding to Europe.
Its blog post stated that “OKCoin users outside of the U.S. can now deposit and withdraw euros.” Euro spot trading for BTC, ETH, and BCH was launched at 20:00 PT on June 4, with support for other euro-based trading pairs planned for the future. Furthermore, until September 4t, euro deposits and withdrawals can be made free of charge.
OKCoin’s new European affiliate has opened an office in Malta, the “Blockchain Island”. This office is part of the chiliZ Blockchain Campus, “an accelerator and hub connecting some of the industry’s largest stakeholders across Asia and Europe.”
The trading services and digital assets that are offered are compliant with Malta’s Virtual Financial Asset Act (“VFAA”), and this OKCoin affiliate will be regulated by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA).