Korea’s two largest crypto exchanges are subject to stricter disclosure rules Regulatory move came after shareholders in Dunamu, Bithumb increased substantially

Translated by Ryu Ho-joung 공개 2022-04-13 08:09:24

이 기사는 2022년 04월 13일 08:07 더벨 유료페이지에 표출된 기사입니다.

Dunamu, which operates crypto trading platform Upbit, and Bithumb Korea – South Korea’s two largest crypto exchanges – are now subject to disclosure requirements equivalent to those applicable to listed companies, as the number of their shareholders increased substantially over the past year.

Late last year the crypto exchanges, both of which are privately held, were added to the list of companies subject to filing quarterly and annual reports with the country’s financial authorities and stock exchange. This marked the first such action in the country’s crypto trading industry.

Under South Korean law, if the number of a private company’s shareholders exceeds 500, it is required to regularly disclose financials as a publicly-traded company does.

The number of shareholders in Dunamu stood at 4,278 at the end of 2021, a more than eightfold increase from below 500 a year ago. The largest shareholders remained the same, with its board chair Song Chi-hyung and his specially related persons together owning a 40.77% stake in the company.

The number of Bithumb Korea’s shareholders also increased more than threefold to 1,635 in the same period. The three largest shareholders in the company remained Bithumb Holdings (73.56%), Vidente (10.22%) and T Scientific (8.17%) at the end of last year.

As crypto booms lifted valuations of crypto trading platforms, shares in the two companies changed hands more frequently in the over-the-counter market in the past year, sharply increasing the number of their shareholders.

Dunamu was recently valued at over 20 trillion won ($16.2 billion) in the OTC market, largely unchanged from November last year when entertainment company HYBE purchased a 2.5% stake in the crypto exchange operator for 500 billion won.

Stock options are another reason for a spike in the number of the companies’ shareholders.

Dunamu has granted 2,369,722 stock options to employees through the end of last year, with 1,676,778 options exercised so far. Bithumb Korea has issued 183,842 stock options, of which 28,037 options have been exercised. (Reporting by Choong-hee Won)
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