BTCC, one of the longest-running and once top-three trading platforms in China, has announced that it’s relaunching its exchange business with a plan to issue its own tokens.
The company said Monday its revamped crypto exchange is now up and running with new trading pairs including bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum and litecoin, as well as crypto-to-crypto trading options.
As part of the plan to revive its business, BTCC said it is introducing a system by which users can be rewarded with points by signing up, completing ID verification and trading. The points, according to the company, can be fully converted into BTCC’s tokens, which will be tradable on its platform.
However, the company has not revealed a concrete timeline for its token issuance, only saying it will be launched in the next “a couple of months.” The firm also indicates that the point supply will have a limit, though it has not yet decided at the moment on a hard cap or a ratio for how the points can be transferred into its token in the future.
Further down the road, BTCC said it is planning to add more cryptocurrencies and it’s also open to listing more ERC-20 based tokens.
BTCC’s relaunch plan comes nearly a year after it suspended Chinese yuan trading against bitcoin in September 2017, following the People’s Bank of China’s clampdown on initial coin offerings and fiat-to-crypto exchanges.
Although the firm shifted its headquarters to Hong Kong and maintained a crypto-to-crypto platform called DAX, that offering was also suspended in December. Meanwhile, BTCC’s regional rivals such as Huobi and OKCoin successfully pivoted to crypto-to-crypto platforms and rejoined the ranks of the world’s largest exchanges by trading volume.
BTCC’s new way of rewarding traders also comes at a time when a new revenue model called “trans-fee mining” has emerged among Chinese crypto exchanges. The system reimburses users’ transaction fees with a platform’s own tokens – a model that appears to be somewhat similar to what BTCC is planning, except that its tokens can only be redeemed at a later stage.
Commenting on that, the firm’s vice president of international business Aaron Choi said that, since BTCC will have zero trading fees in the first three months after relaunch, its model is more of a giveaway.
However, Choi admits that trans-fee mining could be an option in the future for BTCC, as the firm is yet to decide on the issuance model of its tokens.
He told CoinDesk:
“There’s still a business risk so our management is reviewing this model, how it can be sustained in a long term. So giving away points for trading that can be converted into our token in the future is what we think makes sense for now.”
Currently, BTCC has diversified its business to three main areas: the exchange, a mining pool and its Mobi wallet. The company was acquired by a Hong Kong-based blockchain capital firm in January of this year.
Just last week, CoinDesk also reported that the firm is planning to sell 49 percent of its equity in the mining pool business to a financial asset management firm based in Hong Kong.