Unconfirmed: New York based itBit possibly closing down exchange later this year

In the past year, seven employees from the NY based bitcoin exchange and blockchain startup itBit have left the company for other endeavors.

The changes started when itBit released it’s enterprise clearing and settlement network Bankchain last year, pivoting from servicing bitcoin customers as an exchange to also being a blockchain services provider.

Of the employees that have left the company, three have been directors. According to CoinDesk, two of the three departing directors have moved onto investment companies in the digital currency space, with the third launching a recruiting firm.

itBit is filling positions but going in another direction, hiring for blockchain engineer and senior recruiter roles. Other hires appear to be focused on precious metals clearing and settlement indicate a new focus on their product, Bankchain. In June, they announced a collaboration with Belgium based Euroclear Group. Their goal is to explore opportunities in creating a next generation settlement service for the London gold market.

itBit selling or closing the exchange in September

What is more concerning is that according to sources close to the company, itBit may be considering closing or selling its exchange as early as September, with Kraken listed as a possible interested company to acquire the exchange. The company could also be considering a re-brand as Paxos, a name that comes from a group of consensus protocols.

In June of this year, the itBit exchange stopped supporting Texas residents. And earlier this month, amid a string of attacks on bitcoin exchanges from hackers possibly due to a LinkedIn data breach, two itBit customers reported having their accounts hacked into. We reached out to itBit at the time for comment, and never heard back.

It’s unclear at this time what exactly is happening with itBit, but with the amount of staff turnover, business model changes, and possible hacking issues, something is brewing and we more than likely will hear more news from them this year.

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david@bitcoin.com'
David is a writer, researcher, and developer who is passionate about bitcoin and blockchain. He writes for Bitcoin.com, Blockchain.com, and is the founder of Bitcoinx.io (which was acquired by Bitcoin.com). David previously used to write and curate for Myspace and has worked in the fintech and payments space for over 15 years.