On May 30, Japan will welcome a new cryptocurrency exchange, TaoTao, after being in development mode for approximately 12 months. Yahoo Japan is a shareholder with a 40 percent stake. Even after being in development for close to over a year, only two cryptos will initially be supported.
According to Weiss Ratings, an independent firm providing ratings in various fields including crypto:
“Crypto exchange TaoTao, 40% owned by Yahoo! Japan’s YJFX, is scheduled to launch on May 30th. It will initially offer trading in BTC and ETH, as well as margin trading in LTC, XRP, and BCH. Japan is way ahead of everyone in regulating exchanges.”
Apart from a trading website, the new exchange will also be available from a mobile application. TaoTao will be among the few exchanges in Japan that are under the watchful eye of the Financial Services Agency (FSA), the country’s financial watchdog.
Registration Number: 00001
TaoTao has 00001 as its registration number. However, this should not be confused to mean that it’s the first to be registered in Japan. The registration number was transferred from BitARG exchange, which was previously registered by the FSA.
It was at BitARG that Yahoo had a 40 percent stake. During its acquisition in March last year, Yahoo had its sight set on using BitARG’s technology to develop a new virtual currency exchange.
Yahoo and BitARG
In March 2018, Yahoo bought shares on BitARG through YJFX, a fully owned subsidiary of Yahoo and which specializes in providing foreign exchange services. At the time of purchase, the 40 percent stake was estimated to be worth approximately 19 million US dollars. To consolidate its shareholding at BitARG, Yahoo was to purchase more shares in the first quarter of 2019.
However, Yahoo made a few adjustments on BitARG’s system. According to Nikkei Asian Review, a news outlet, after the initial purchase of shares, engineers and executives went to BitARG:
“Where they [were to] spend about a year developing the new exchange system. They will also work on a corporate governance structure, a customer management system, and internal controls.”
Japan And Cryptocurrency Exchanges
Japan is among the most important cryptocurrency markets in the world. Unfortunately, it’s home to some of the high-profile exchange hacks in the history of cryptocurrencies. This ranges from Mt Gox, an exchange that was once handling over 80 percent of global Bitcoin trades and which was hacked never to recover, to Coincheck which lost over 500 million US dollars in a hack in 2018. It was until towards the end of 2018 that Coincheck resumed trading, although partially.
In a statement, Coincheck said:
“With the cooperation of external experts who carried out a step-by-step safety audit, we have restarted the services that enable the receipt, purchase, and exchange of XRP and FCT.”
Zaif was another Japanese crypto exchange that suffered a security breach which took it seven months to resume trading. Luckily, the county’s financial regulator has been on high alert to prevent future hacks by following up on the security measures implemented by crypto exchanges.