- In 2019, Turnaround Focused on 'Customer Oriented Management'
SEOUL, South Korea, April 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Bithumb Korea ("Company"), a company operating virtual asset exchange, Bithumb, reported strong 2019 results - 144.6 billion KRW in revenue, 67.7 billion KRW in operating income, and 37.2 billion KRW in net income. The Company successfully returned to profitability after 1 year, initially posting a net loss of 205.7 billion KRW in 2018.
Since 2018, Jae Won Choi, CEO of Bithumb Korea, escalated customer experience to the top of the Company's agenda, and focused on enhancing the user interface (UI) on the trading platform and continually improving communication with customers. While retaining the existing customers, the Company expanded the customer base by initiating collaboration efforts, including co-marketing, with partners from diverse industries such as e-commerce, finance.
Concurrently, the Company improved internal productivity by reinvesting funds into the core IT infrastructure, enhancing dev and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) capabilities, and undergoing headcount and organizational restructuring. In Q1 2020, the Company continued outplacement and additional restructuring efforts, thereby continuing the drive to reduce operational expenses.
In line with the internal changes, the trading fee policy was amended to be incurred solely in KRW, compared to both KRW and virtual assets prior to the change. The new fee policy minimizes pricing risk of the Company's underlying assets, improves convenience for trading, and increases accounting transparency.
In 2018, the virtual asset industry underwent a cyclical slump in trading activity, resulting in contracted revenue for the Company, from 2017's peak of 391.6 billion KRW to 144.6 billion KRW, and operational income from 265.1 billion KRW to 67.7 billion KRW. Considering the bull market in early 2018, and in particular, January 2018's trade volume accounted for half of the 2018's annual revenue, it is difficult to fairly assess the performance between 2018 and 2019. The "crypto winter" continued into 2019 placing pressure on the entire industry, but the Company made necessary adjustments, resulting in relatively strong results.
- Core Business Strategy for 2020
In 2020, Bithumb Korea seeks to emerge as a 'Global Comprehensive Digital Finance Platform Company' and earn widespread recognition as a blockchain-based, innovation leader. The Company is working closely with local regulators to receive an official license from the Korean government by fulfilling all requirements in anticipation of the upcoming regulations and strengthening customer service infrastructure.
The Company is committed to becoming the leading company within the blockchain and virtual asset industry, and advancing the overall infrastructure. Bithumb's R&D research center is drilling in on research for blockchain, big data, and cryptography. In addition, the Company is collaborating with Korea University's Blockchain Security Research Center, as well as other specialized research institutions for work on groundbreaking technology. The Company will expand into decentralized finance (DeFi), decentralized applications (DApp) and other blockchain-based products to revitalize the domestic virtual asset industry.
Continuing with the "Customer Oriented Management" initiative, the Company is dedicated to improving the service infrastructure for the customers. The Company recently released a professional trading app for optimized virtual asset trading, thereby providing a wider selection of platforms for users' convenience. Bithumb Korea aims to maintain its position of having the highest trade volume amongst domestic exchanges, and develop into a leading, global exchange. By participating in the Distributed ID (DID) Alliance, customers will benefit with streamlined ID authentication process and reinforced personal data protection. Also, the Company plans to upgrade capacity for the industry leading customer service centers and establish training programs for customers, thereby rounding out the comprehensive initiative set by the Company.
As an industry leader, the Company is preemptively planning for new regulations. In March, the 'Act on Reporting and Use of Specific Financial Transaction Information' was passed by the South Korean National Assembly that will provide a framework for virtual asset exchange licensing. The Company is committed to complying with local regulation, and expanding beyond the domestic market into the global market as a leading, innovative exchange. To comply with the anticipated local regulation, the Company established an industry first, Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Center, and integrating Know Your Customer (KYC), Fraud Detection System (FDS), and a host of additional solutions and upgrades.
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SOURCE Bithumb Korea