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Will Hong Kong Be the Next Global Crypto Center?

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In 2022, Hong Kong introduced a number of policies to empower Web3 development, which attracted the attention of investors. Over recent years, the region missed out on the opportunities presented by the crypto market. Could the policy support help Hong Kong venture into crypto as a latecomer?

Located at the heart of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, Hong Kong has been a major channel for transferring funds among investors in mainland China in recent years. For decades, the place has been a strategic area for China’s financial development. The city’s huge talent pool in the field of technology and finance will provide strong backing for Web3 development.

In addition to policy support, Samsung Asset Management has stated that it will, if conditions permit, unveil a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) in Hong Kong. Besides, Justin Sun also made a high-profile announcement that he would shift his focus to Hong Kong. In fact, before Samsung and Justin Sun decided to go into the city, many companies already set up their headquarters in Hong Kong. 

1. About Capital Management

Although About Capital Management might sound strange to many crypto investors, most are very familiar with its holding company: Huobi. About Capital Management is an asset management company established in Hong Kong in 2013, and its founder Chen Yihua used to be a partner at Greenwoods Asset Management. It is noteworthy that in its monthly report for April 2022, the company emphasized that it is confident in crypto over the long run. Moreover, About Capital Management was already a crypto holder last August according to its portfolios at the time.

2. Animoca Brands

In our previous review of the blockchain financing activities in 2022, we covered Animoca Brands, which raised $110 million from distinguished institutional investors including Temasek and GGV with a valuation of $6 billion in September 2022. For many crypto investors, Animoca Brands might be another strange name, but most users must have heard of its NFT project The Sandbox, which went viral in late 2021. 

3. Amber Group

In early 2022, Amber Group raised $200 million from institutional investors that include Temasek and Sequoia China in the Series B+ financing round with a valuation of $3 billion. However, by late 2022, the company announced mass layoffs to reduce operating costs. Despite that, Amber Group managed to raise $300 million in the Series C financing round. Moreover, the company also introduced WhaleFin, its digital asset platform, and became the global and main partner of Atlético de Madrid the same year.

4. IOSG Ventures

Although crypto beginners might not be familiar with IOSG Ventures, it is one of the primary investors behind Polkadot and Near Protocol. Apart from that, the institution also invested in many other blockchain-based companies and projects, including Galxe (formerly Project Galaxy), Footprint Analytics, CyberConnect, Cosmos, Aztec, Arbitrum, and Ancient8, which claims to be the biggest blockchain game guild in Vietnam.

In the early days, many crypto companies were established and headquartered in Hong Kong, but in recent years, the city’s unfriendly crypto policies drove away many companies, such as FTX, which filed for bankruptcy last year, and Crypto.com. That being said, many crypto companies are still headquartered in Hong Kong, including BitMEX, HashKey Group, GBV Capital, and Bitfinex.

It should be noted that, as of this writing, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority issued the Conclusion of Discussion Paper on Crypto-assets and Stablecoins, and the series of policies and statements demonstrate Hong Kong’s strong determination to regain the title of “global crypto center”. 

Despite that, in light of the cost of recruitment and business operations, as well as the progress of Web development in other regions, Hong Kong still has a long way to go. Still, as the most essential bridge between institutional investors in mainland China and the world, Hong Kong shows great promise in becoming the global crypto center.

After all, the crypto market remains in its infancy, and everything is possible. This is also why most long-term investors are confident in the future of crypto, as well as its performance in 2023. However, we should always practice prudence when making crypto investments.

As for investment platforms, I’d normally go with long-established exchanges with strong institutional backing. CoinEx, for instance, is one of the best solutions in today’s market. Backed by ViaBTC Group, the exchange has maintained a zero-accident record during the past five years since its inception.

On CoinEx, users can access a versatile selection of crypto services, spanning spot trading, futures trading, margin trading, AMM, mining, crypto finance, and CoinEx Dock. Available in 15 languages, the exchange offers 600+ premium cryptos and 1,000+ trading pairs. To date, CoinEx has provided trading support for over 4 million users in more than 200 countries and regions around the world.

Disclaimer: No investment advice is provided in this article, and all data mentioned herein are for reference only. You should not rely on the information provided herein to make any investment decision, and you will be fully liable for your own investment decisions.