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Thailand’s Premier Crypto Exchange Embarks on Major Recruitment Drive Before IPO

ByDayne Lee

Apr 3, 2024
Thailand's Premier Crypto Exchange Embarks on Major Recruitment Drive Before IPO

Bitkub Capital Group Holdings, the conglomerate owning Thailand’s top cryptocurrency exchange, is on the brink of a significant evolution. As it gears up for an initial public offering (IPO) set for 2025, the company has begun enlisting financial advisors to streamline the process. This strategic move, as disclosed to Bloomberg by CEO Jirayut Srupsrisopa on April 1, signifies a pivotal step towards raising fresh capital and enhancing Bitkub’s visibility in the financial marketplace.

Strategic Expansion and Workforce Doubling

Amid plans for going public on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET), Bitkub is not just focusing on external advisory but also on internal growth. Despite a reduction in workforce by 6% over 2022 and 2023, the company now eyes an ambitious expansion. The goal is to bolster the employee count to 1,000 by 2025, effectively doubling the current roster of 2,000. This hiring surge underscores Bitkub’s commitment to scaling operations and enhancing its service offerings in anticipation of the IPO.

Bitkub’s announcement in a 2023 shareholder letter marked the beginning of its journey towards an IPO in Thailand, albeit without extensive details. The exchange’s stronghold in the Thai market is undeniable, commanding a 77% market share as of December 2023, with an average daily trading volume of around $30 million. This dominance is further highlighted by the competitive landscape, featuring other significant exchanges like Upbit, Bitazza, and Zipmex, the latter having faced trading suspension in November 2023 following regulatory interventions.

Thailand’s Crypto Landscape

Thailand’s evolving crypto scene has seen a substantial uptick in user adoption, boasting over 13 million crypto users by 2023—18% of the national population. Projections suggest this number could escalate to 17.7 million by 2028. Bitkub’s strategic movements are occurring within a dynamic ecosystem, with new entrants like Binance’s local subsidiary and Kasikornbank’s acquisition of Satang Exchange marking the intensification of competition for market share.

Bitkub’s financial landscape has been marked by notable transactions and strategic shifts. In July 2023, the exchange divested a 9.2% stake in Bitkub Online to Asphere Innovations for 600 million baht ($16.5 million). This move, coupled with expectations of a surge in trading volumes reminiscent of the 2021 bull market, positions Bitkub Online—a contributor of roughly 80% to Bitkub Capital’s earnings—as a potent asset in the group’s portfolio.

In 2022, a significant acquisition attempt by SCB X for a 51% stake in Bitkub Online was abandoned amidst growing regulatory scrutiny, reflecting the complex regulatory landscape that crypto businesses navigate.

Navigating Challenges and Leveraging Opportunities

Bitkub’s journey towards an IPO is laden with both opportunities and challenges:

  • Opportunities:
    • Enhanced market visibility and capital influx post-IPO.
    • Strategic positioning within a rapidly growing crypto adoption landscape in Thailand.
    • Expansion and diversification in service offerings, fueled by a doubled workforce.
  • Challenges:
    • Navigating regulatory complexities, as evidenced by past scrutiny and market interventions.
    • Sustaining market dominance amidst increasing competition from both local and international players.
    • Ensuring the integration of new hires aligns with the company’s strategic goals and operational efficiency.
IPO TimelinePlanned for 2025 on the SET
Current Workforce2,000 employees
Hiring Goal by 20251,000 additional employees
Market Share77% as of December 2023
Daily Trading VolumeApproximately $30 million
Crypto User Projection17.7 million by 2028 in Thailand
Stake Sold in 20239.2% of Bitkub Online for 600 million baht

As Bitkub Capital Group Holdings marches towards its 2025 IPO, the contours of its strategic roadmap begin to take shape—marked by aggressive hiring, financial advisory, and a keen eye on regulatory dynamics. This approach not only reinforces Bitkub’s commitment to solidifying its market presence but also underlines the broader momentum within Thailand’s crypto ecosystem. With a blend of ambition and strategic foresight, Bitkub is poised to navigate the complexities of public.

Featured image credit: Bitkub Capital Group Holdings

Dayne Lee

With a foundation in financial day trading, I transitioned to my current role as an editor, where I prioritize accuracy and reader engagement in our content. I excel in collaborating with writers to ensure top-quality news coverage. This shift from finance to journalism has been both challenging and rewarding, driving my commitment to editorial excellence.

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