Hong Kong’s time to step up as fallout from crash of crypto exchange FTX rattles digital currency market, Animoca’s Yat Siu says
- The Animoca chairman expects the FTX crash to strengthen Hong Kong’s resolve to build a regulatory infrastructure for its digital-assets industry
- His comments come after the spectacular collapse of crypto exchange FTX, which has filed for bankruptcy protection in the US
Hong Kong is not expected to be negatively affected by the fallout from FTX’s debacle, according to Siu, who sent an open letter on Friday to Animoca’s shareholders, employees and partners about the crisis just hours before the US firm filed for bankruptcy.
Animoca’s exposure to FTX, for example, is “limited to a non-material trading balance, and we continue to invest and support the ecosystem”, Siu wrote.
“The impact is less financial, but more about reputational damage,” Siu said.
In his open letter, Siu wrote: “I am upset that the important work on making the web decentralised, free from central power structures that continue to abuse their disproportionate power, is once again being overshadowed by very few irresponsible actors. Very few.”
Those actors, who were not named, “do not represent our industry”, Siu said on Saturday. He asserted that what happened to FTX this past week was “an attack on our reputation as an industry and on the goodwill that we are building toward”.
Still, Siu said he remains hopeful, especially in light of the Hong Kong government’s determination to develop its digital-assets industry.
“The devastating dot-com crash of 2000 didn’t kill the burgeoning internet. The horrific 2008 financial crisis didn’t halt the explosive growth of the internet, smartphones, or mobile gaming. The frigid crypto winter of 2018 didn’t extinguish the crypto flame,” Siu said, quoting his open letter.
“All of those events seemed brutally terminal at their time, but if you could travel back to 2000, 2008, and 2018, you would have no difficulty in picking the winning side that seemed – back then – to be inexorably doomed.”
“We firmly believe that Web3 represents the natural evolution of the internet, of a future where digital property rights and the resulting economic freedom will empower billions of online users in an interconnected series of open worlds and platforms.”