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Crypto Custody Could Help Keep South Korea’s Biggest Exchanges Afloat

Tim Alper
Last updated: | 1 min read

South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges have been suffering as trading volumes continue to remain low or stagnant in what was once one of the world’s busiest bitcoin (BTC) and altcoin markets.

Source: iStock/RugliG

The downturn in trading has already seen many exchanges go out of business in recent months. And cryptocurrency industry insiders in the country have told that “mass closures” are highly likely in the exchange business if trading figures do not rise soon.

But per a report from media outlet Sports Seoul, the nation’s six biggest platforms have already developed business models that could allow them to survive even the bitterest of crypto winters.

The six market leaders – Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, Korbit, Gopax and GDAC – have been particularly keen to develop crypto custodial services.

Coinone, for instance, operates a range of lockup and staking benefits and – like rival platform GDAC – began offering custodial services pretty much from its outset.

The report adds that Bithumb has also recently unveiled a range of custody options and new services, including crypto lending options launched in conjunction with a domestic crypto-lending provider.

Upbit, meanwhile, is now running a rewards and loans service in conjunction with its DXM subsidiary, as well as a new Upbit Safe feature.

Gopax has taken a slightly different approach to diversifying its business model, with a business-to-business solution of sorts. It has developed the DASK platform, which law enforcement agencies such as the prosecution service and the police force can use to freeze and store cryptocurrencies seized by suspected criminals or money launderers while they conduct investigations.

Korbit has also taken a slightly different track – and plans to work with a Singapore-based cryptocurrency payment service company named MatrixPort. The two companies hope to jointly launch a range of financial services including crypto custodial offerings.