Office Lease By Crypto Exchange May Not Be Renewed

Pricey HK Office Lease By Crypto Exchange May Not Be Renewed

HONG KONG – Cryptocurrency exchange BitMEX is firing 25 percent of its global manpower, putting into question one of the most expensive office leases in Hong Kong, reported the South China Morning Post (SCMP) on Tuesday evening (5 April, SGT).

Notably, the company is paying landlord CK Asset Holdings almost US$600,000 per month since 2018 to occupy a Grade A office space at Cheung Kong Center, one of the most prestigious office buildings in Hong Kong.

Strategically located in Hong Kong’s Central, the Cheung Kong Centre is located near the Bank of China Tower, as well as the Standard Chartered Bank building and the HSBC Holdings headquarters building.

Moreover, BitMEX will likely require a smaller office presence amidst the work-from-home (WFH) trend, which has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. This puts its Cheung Kong Centre office lease into question when it is due for renewal in 2023, revealed a source with knowledge of the matter.

Notably, the Seychelles-based cryptocurrency derivatives exchange will lay off 75 employees effective this month. BitMEX is firing 25 percent of its global workforce as it streamlines its business amid heightened regulatory scrutiny.

A representative verified that the cryptocurrency exchange is slashing its workforce to prepare for “the next phase of the business.” But the spokesperson insisted that the platform will operate as normal.

BitMEX, which is known for its highly leveraged perpetual swaps that let traders bet up to 100 times their capital, was previously the leading marketplace for cryptocurrencies.

However, cryptocurrency trading platforms are facing a more challenging operating environment, as regulators from across the world ramp up their scrutiny of their marketing to retail investors, a key driver that has propelled the growth of the US$2.3 trillion crypto sector.

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