Taotao, the cryptocurrency exchange owned by Yahoo! Japan, has confirmed it will be launching its trading service on May 30, according to its official Twitter account.
The new platform began accepting pre-registrations on March 25, and its formally-approved trading activities will start with a limited number of cryptocurrencies. Taotao will initially launch bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) as its base currencies, and also plans to offer leveraged positions on bitcoin cash (BCH), litecoin (LTC), and the Ripple ecosystem’s XRP.
— TAOTAO（タオタオ）暗号資産取引所 (@taotao_ex) May 27, 2019
Yahoo!’s first concrete foray into the crypto sector comes on the heels of Bitcoin’s latest bull run which saw some exchanges struggle to keep up with the increased demand.
However, the arrival of Taotao comes amid efforts by Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA), the country’s vanguard financial regulator, to more tightly manage domestic cryptocurrency margin trading platforms. It also comes at a time when major exchanges are being investigated by Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) following a hack on cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck, in which more than $530 million worth of NEM was stolen.
Through its retail Forex brokerage arm, YJFX, Yahoo Japan acquired a 40 percent stake in Taotao, formerly BitARG, back in 2018. The crypto exchange is already regulated by the country’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) as a licensed platform to buy and sell Bitcoins and use the firm’s technology to open its own exchange. At the time, the purchase price for the stake in BitARG was disclosed to be 2 billion yen ($19 million).
Yahoo Japan is the largest Internet provider/payment processor in the country, where it has a bigger presence than Google in search and mail services and supplies more financial transactions than PayPal.
YJFX is 100 percent owned by Yahoo Japan. The retail FX brokerage was started in 2003 and is part of the parent company’s financial and payment-related services.