Japanese internet giant Rakuten has begun letting prospective users of its Rakuten Wallet cryptocurrency exchange open accounts, Cointelegraph Japan reported on April 15.
Rakuten, which plans to launch the exchange in June, now offers online registration for traders, all of whom need a Rakuten user ID and associated bank account to complete the process.
The company took over Everybody’s Bitcoin platform in 2018, introducing changes that allowed it to procure a license for the operation from Japanese regulators in December. Everybody’s Bitcoin had previously been cited by regulators for deficiencies in management control.
Rakuten joins a steady stream of major players preparing an entry into the domestic cryptocurrency scene, among them Yahoo! Japan, which owns 40% of forthcoming platform TaoTao, set for launch in May.
Others have added to their existing features to respond to user demand. This week, Coincheck added the first to altcoins to its over-the-counter trading desk, having launched with bitcoin (BTC) at the start of April.
Also this week, a Japanese investor financed $200 million for the owners of South Korean platform Bithumb, part of a Series A funding round.
At the same time, Cointelegraph reported on Monday that Money Forward Inc., the developer of another exchange project, had decided not to go ahead with its plans due to the ongoing cryptocurrency bear market.
“The virtual currency market has cooled rapidly and the downside risk of profitability has been increased by continuing the business,” a board statement about the decision confirmed.