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Cryptocurrency exchange Bitfront has announced its intention to cease operations in the coming months, citing challenges facing the industry. The U.S. trading platform, backed by Japan’s social media giant Line, indicated the decision is unrelated to the collapse of FTX.

Line-Supported Digital Asset Exchange Bitfront Suspends New Sign-ups

Bitfront, a crypto exchange operating in the United States, has suspended new sign-ups and credit card payments while planning to cease operations in a few months’ time. The move comes despite efforts to overcome the current challenges in the “rapidly evolving” crypto industry, the company announced, quoted by Reuters and Bloomberg.

In the statement published on its website, the exchange explained it has “regretfully determined that we need to shut down Bitfront in order to continue growing the Line blockchain ecosystem and Link token economy.” The U.S.-based platform, which launched in 2020, is backed by the Japanese social media firm Line Corp.

Bitfront also pointed out that the decision to close down is not related to the problems of “certain exchanges that have been accused of misconduct,” an indirect reference to FTX, one of the largest global players in the market before it collapsed and filed for bankruptcy protection on Nov. 11 amid liquidity issues.

Other companies in the space, like Blockfi for example, have been hurt by exposure to FTX. The crypto lender announced on Monday it has petitioned for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection along with eight of its affiliates. When Blockfi paused withdrawals earlier this month, it specifically cited the “lack of clarity” regarding the state of FTX at the time.

With a 24-hour volume of less than $94 million, only a dozen trading pairs and six coins, according to Coingecko, Bitfront has a small share of a market with a total trading volume of almost $57 billion over the same period, the Bloomberg report noted.

The exchange informed users that new sign-ups and card payments have been suspended on Nov. 28 while deposits in cryptocurrency and U.S. dollars will be halted on Dec. 30. It also urged customers to withdraw all their assets by March 31, 2023, when all withdrawals will be suspended as well.

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