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Major Brokerage Firm May Acquire Japanese Exchange Coincheck

Coincheck, the Tokyo-based cryptocurrency exchange that suffered one of the largest hacks in history this past January, has reportedly been “looking for support from a third party” after it was hit with a number of class action lawsuits stemming from the hack that saw over $500M in NEM stolen. According to a new report by Nikkei Asian Review, that support has arrived.

The report, which has since been verified via a press release, says that Japan-based online brokerage firm Monex Group has made an offer of “several billion yen” for a majority stake in Coincheck. Monex is seeking to create a new management team comprised of their own internal executives, replacing the existing Coincheck staff and rebuilding the floundering cryptocurrency exchange’s platform.

Monex has confirmed the offer, but the deal – which may be announced as soon as this week, according to Nikkei – has not yet been finalized.

Like Yahoo Japan’s recent move to acquire Japanese exchange BitARG, Monex’s motivation may lie both with the existing exchange framework and the fact that, like Bit ARG, Coincheck is already licensed by Japan’s Financial Services Agency.

The JFSA has been cracking down on other major cryptocurrencies in the region, issuing a warning to Binance, and causing a handful of exchanges to throw in the towel and close up shop rather than proceed with the FSA’s approval process and comply with requirements. Monex can avoid all of this by purchasing Coincheck, rather than starting its own venture.

Coincheck’s hack at the start of 2018 caused the JFSA to increase its regulatory efforts in the crypto space. Coincheck has committed to reimburse users who suffered a loss as a result of the hack, but has since been hit with multiple lawsuits from customers seeking additional damages.

Monex stock shares have increased 23% following the takeover news.