South Africa's Regulatory Uncertainty Driving Away Crypto Startups: Report

A looming regulatory clampdown following a major Ponzi scheme's collapse is already prompting some exchanges to flee abroad.

AccessTimeIconMar 11, 2021 at 1:43 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:24 p.m. UTC

Fear of a regulatory clampdown in South Africa is driving cryptocurrency startups to look to more friendly environments.

  • Some crypto exchanges have already made the decision to go, Bloomberg reported Monday.
  • For example, Revix is shifting its head office to the U.K. and also planning a Germany-based location.
  • The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) is seeking to regulate cryptocurrencies with more power to prosecute fraudsters, Head of Enforcement Brandon Topham told Bloomberg in January.
  • The looming changes come after the collapse of Mirror Trading Investments (MTI) in December 2020, which had collected over 23,000 bitcoin from investors before its CEO allegedly fled to Brazil.
  • Regulators will focus on better protection for consumers rather than businesses, according to Topham, who added more proposals are expected in coming months.
  • Until now, authorities in South Africa have been "incredibly slow in terms of regulation," according to Sean Sanders, CEO of Cape Town-based Revix.
  • This stymies growth as customers "arrive at our platform with skepticism," he said.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.


CoinDesk - Unknown
Argentines Take Refuge in Stablecoins After Economy Minister Resignation

Major crypto exchanges reported that consumers purchased up to three times as many stablecoins over the weekend as they usually do amid a brewing economic crisis.

CoinDesk - Unknown
CoinDesk - Unknown
First Mover Asia: Singapore’s Monetary Authority Finally Notices Three Arrows’ Capital AUM Discrepancy; Bitcoin Holds Above $19K in Weekend Trading

The Monetary Authority of Singapore’s reprimand of the crypto hedge fund for providing misleading information may only be a first step.

CoinDesk - Unknown
CoinDesk - Unknown
Hard Times in Crypto: the Unintended Consequences of Going Public

The third and final reflection on a series of risks we’re thinking about during these crypto down days.

CoinDesk - Unknown
CoinDesk - Unknown
After Bitcoin Maximalism

A Twitter debate sparks much reflection.

CoinDesk - Unknown