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Siam Commercial Bank terminates Bitkup’s acquisition deal

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Popular bank Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) has terminated its deal to acquire Thailand’s crypto exchange platform Bitkub. The banking giant announced the development in its latest press release. Siam Commercial Bank previously planned to acquire the crypto exchange in a $500 million deal. 

According to the press release, SCB cited “required regulatory issue fixes in the exchange” as the reason behind its decision. The Thailand banking leader feels Bitkup is facing too many regulatory issues and will need more time to fix them.

According to SCB, “Bitkub is currently in the process of resolving various issues as per the recommendations and orders of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Thailand, which are uncertain in terms of the time frame in resolving those issues. As a result, the buyer and the seller have agreed to terminate the transaction.”

The bank added that it remains committed to executing strategic plans toward cementing entries into businesses relating to blockchain. This, according to SCB, will play a massive role in Thailand’s economy and financial industry.

The genesis of the acquisition deal

The acquisition deal commenced late last year. Then, the banking giant announced its intention to pursue a “share purchase agreement” with the crypto exchange. As reported, it planned to obtain at least 51% of the shares in Bitkub through “Bitkub Capital Group Holdings.” SCB hinted that the aggregate value of the deal amounted to about ฿17,850 million, equivalent to $500 million. The deal was expected to be concluded by the first quarter of 2022.

The deal continued to linger with the anticipation of the acquisition gaining momentum. However, the Thailand Securities and Exchange Commission ordered Bitkub to revisit its procedures for listing KUB crypto assets on its exchange in July. 

The regulator also slammed the exchange with fines for not complying with the appropriate rules in listing the asset. Bitkup was instructed to upgrade its platform to avert the recurrence of the outage it experienced earlier. These situations informed the decision of SCB to terminate the acquisition deal.

Bitkup has, however, reacted to the development. The crypto exchange maintained that the deal’s termination did not impact its business operations. According to the founder and CEO of the exchange, Topp Jirayut Srupsrisopa, Bitkup will still make history despite its recent regulatory troubles. Srupsrisopa said the exchange will emerge as the “new national champion for Thailand, to usher the Thai economy into the world of the future, and for Thailand to become the region’s financial and technology hub.”

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