• Localbitcoins, the Helsinki-based bitcoin exchange founded in 2012, is shutting down after over a decade of service due to the “ongoing crypto-winter.”
• The company’s operators attribute its closure to the decrease in demand for bitcoin trading services resulting from competition by centralized crypto exchanges.
• In 2021, during the crypto bull market and resurgence in digital currency prices, Localbitcoins announced the launch of an Android mobile app but it was not enough to regain its former volume.
Localbitcoins Shuts Down After 10 Years
Localbitcoins, the Helsinki, Finland-based bitcoin exchange founded in 2012, is closing operations after over a decade of service. The company’s operators attribute the shutdown to the „ongoing crypto-winter,“ which has left them unable to continue offering their bitcoin trading services.
Challenges Faced by Localbitcoins
The first peer-to-peer (P2P) bitcoin exchange, Localbitcoins, is ending operations after over ten years in business. New signups will be suspended as of Feb 9th 2023 and trading will be suspended seven days later on Feb 16th. Following the suspension of trading users will only have 12 months to withdraw their bitcoins. Initially established with a mission to bring bitcoin everywhere and drive global financial inclusion; this challenge proved difficult due to competition from centralized crypto exchanges which eventually surpassed LocalBitcoins in terms of trade volume.
In 2019 LocalBitcoins also had to face regulatory changes such as Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations which made its platform less desirable for peer-to-peer traders who preferred its more lenient stance before then. That same year they ended all in person trades making it even harder for them to compete with other exchanges.
Launch Of Mobile App
In 2021 during the crypto bull market and resurgence in digital currency prices; LocalBitcoins launched an android mobile app but even that wasn’t enough for them to regain their former trade volumes as statistics show that they are currently at levels comparable with those seen during 2015 bear market period..