India's largest cryptocurrency exchange is on the verge of shutting down.
Amidst consistent RBI pressure surrounding cryptocurrency-related transactions on its platform, Zebpay announced that they are shutting down their incredibly popular exchange.
“The curb on bank accounts has crippled our, and our customers’, ability to transact business meaningfully. At this point, we are unable to find a reasonable way to conduct the cryptocurrency exchange business. As a result, we are stopping our exchange activities.”
- Official Statement on The Zebpay Blog
Zebpay was founded in 2015, with an objective to cater to the needs of early adopters of the cryptocurrency wave. They managed to hit over 200K app installs and generated a turnover of Rs 500 crores by 2017, and by late 2017, the Zebpay exchange was reportedly adding between 300K to 400K users every month.
But after the 2017 price boom in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the RBI and other regulatory bodies began snooping in on platforms that enabled such transactions.
Essentially designed to empower a decentralized economy, crypto transcations remain largely anonymous and this was not taken lightly by governing bodies. Although the Supreme Court of India is yet to announce a full verdict on the issue, the continuous bashing seems to have taken a toll on a firm as large as Zebpay.
Note: An estimated Rs 10,000 crores (nearly $1.5 billion) were transacted in cryptocurrency in India in January 2018, according to industry estimates. The Zebpay wallet will continue to be functional, but the exhacnge - which formerly allowed crypto-to-crypto transactions, is being effectively shut down.