Zipmex in advanced rescue talks with investment firm, billionaire's son: Source

Quick Take

  • Country Group Holdings, a Thai investment firm, and Thai billionaire’s son Chalermchai Mahagitsiri are in advanced talks with Zipmex, a source told The Block.
  • The troubled crypto exchange announced yesterday that it is in advanced talks with two potential investors.

Zipmex is in advanced talks with Country Group Holdings (CGH), a Thailand-based investment firm, and Chalermchai Mahagitsiri, son of Thai billionaire and coffee king Prayudh Mahagitsiri, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told The Block.

The troubled South Asian crypto exchange, which halted client withdrawals last month, said Thursday that it is in "advanced" talks with two investors for a potential deal.

Mahagitsiri plans to invest in Zipmex via his cybersecurity services company called Cloudsec Asia, the source said, adding that Mahagitsiri is also one of Zipmex's top creditors. Mahagitsiri owns 10% of Cloudsec Asia via his ventures unit V Ventures Technologies Company. Notably, V Ventures is also an existing investor in Zipmex, having participated in its Series B round last September.

CGH is an investor in Thailand-based Cryptomind Group, which operates a decentralized finance (DeFi) asset management platform called Elkrem Capital, according to its website.

Zipmex declined to comment on CGH and Mahagitsiri's investment interest. 

"We are bound by a legal confidentiality agreement, so we cannot confirm or deny anything," chief marketing officer Proud Limpongpan told The Block.

CGH and Mahagitsiri did not immediately respond to The Block's request for comment.

Zipmex issues

Zipmex halted client withdrawals on July 20 due to volatile market conditions and the resulting financial difficulties of its "key business partners." It later revealed that those business partners are Babel Finance and Celsius, two beleaguered crypto lenders that suspended withdrawals in June. Zipmex's total exposure to Babel and Celsius is $53 million and it is reportedly looking to raise about that much from investors.

Zipmex has since moved to resume some withdrawals for certain assets. It is currently working towards re-enabling all fund transfers from its Z wallets to Trade wallets. Zipmex's Z wallet allowed users to opt for its ZipUp+ feature to deposit their crypto holdings and earn rewards. The Trade wallet allowed users to deposit fiat currency and trade and store cryptocurrencies. This wallet also enables fiat and crypto withdrawals.

“By resuming the Z Wallet service and doing everything possible to resolve the aforementioned problems. I can confirm that we will continue to move forward to resume services to serve our customers effectively and fairly," Zipmex co-founder and Thailand CEO Akalarp Yimwilai said in Thursday's statement about advanced talks with two investors.

Zipmex yesterday also announced that it has appointed restructuring specialist KordaMentha Pte as its financial advisor. KordaMentha and Zipmex are expected to provide further updates regarding the restructuring process soon.

Zipmex has until December 2 to to sort out its financial problems, having received a moratorium extension of over three months from the Singapore High Court earlier this month.

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.