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SCB X Plc (SCB), formerly known as Siam Commercial Bank, announced that it was ‘delaying’ the planned acquisition of Bitkub, Thailand’s leading digital asset exchange.
“Presently, the matter is in the process of due diligence and discussion with the regulatory bodies. Therefore, the completion period of the transaction is now delayed,” SCBX said in a statement to the Stock Exchange of Thailand, late yesterday evening.
The delay in the planned acquisition also comes as market talks have been floating that SCBX, the so-called mothership, that had announced its plans to acquire 50% of Bitkub for a staggering 17.85 billion baht, was looking to negotiate the price down or even walk out of the deal, after the crypto market meltdown over the past 3-months.
SCBX, as part of its remodeling of the business organization had made a bold move to renovate its business model away from just being a typical bank and expanded itself to being more of a ‘fintech’ company calling itself the mothership and making the bank one of the many parts of the business units of the ‘mothership’. Bitkub was to become SCBX’s other business unit for digital platform.
Meltdown of Cryptocurrencies
Globally the fear of recession coupled with the gradual sucking out of excess money from the system has sent the cryptocurrencies on a tailspin with the bellwether of the market – BitCoin tumbling at just about $21,500 against $33,800 seen 1-year ago and not to mention the $68,990 seen when the currency hit an all-time high on November 9, 2021.
Bitkub is not immune to the ups and downs seen in the crypto market and it too has seen its shares trade at around $3 on Saturday July 9th. Bitkub had hit a low of $2.13/share on June 18 and its highest trading value was at $16.01 seen on December 27, 2021.
The move of taking a little longer than expected for ‘due diligence’ is therefore no surprise.
Calls to Bitkub founder Jirayut Srupsrisopa and Arthid Nanthawithaya, Chief Executive Officer of SCBX went unanswered.