An old and well-known lender in Thailand has put off an opportunity to acquire a stake in a crypto company, Bitkub. Bitkub is Thailand’s biggest crypto exchange. This decision was made because of tighter regulations for the crypto industry. The fear was that it would curtail crypto trading growth domestically.
Siam Commercial Bank’s (SCB) parent company put off a deal worth ca. 17.9 billion baht to buy a 51% share in Bitkub. As Thailand’s oldest lending company, postponing this deal was done because Thai regulations are quite strict. A senior official at SCB said that the company made this clear in a letter to Thailand’s Stock Exchange. They are still examining the deal closely as part of the due diligence process.
SCB first made its goal to buy a Bitkub stake known in November 2021. This transaction would be conducted through its subsidiary handling brokerage activities, SCB Securities. SCB’s strategy was
to enter the fintech market and become a player. The process was to be completed by Q1 of 2022.
The delay in closing the deal was due to announcements by the country’s SEC and the central bank to enact tougher crypto regulations. This announcement was made in February this year. According to the latest rules, companies had to limit crypto payments use and trade only on licensed platforms. In the meanwhile, the slump in the overall crypto sector dulled Bitkub hopes of a customer base expansion.
Thanks to the imposition of stricter rules in Thailand, Bitkub has been working on relocating to Vietnam. According to the Bitkub CEO, Vietnam is known for having a friendly crypto climate. Earlier this year, Bitkub joined hands with a startup in Vietnam to launch Kubtech, a blockchain company in the private sector. It will soon start operating as a digital asset trading platform.