Disney Could Soon Own Oldest Bitcoin Exchange in $13 Billion Equity Deal
An equity battle involving a South Korean gaming giant could end up with Walt Disney Co. owning two major cryptocurrency exchanges.
Happy Ending For Disney And Crypto?
As local news outlet JoongAng Ilbo reported quoted by Korea Herald April 17, Disney is currently one of the major bidders for a 98.6 percent stake in Nexon, South Korea’s largest game developer and the second-largest online games publisher in the world.
Nexon is 47 percent owned by NXC, the chairman of which, Jung-ju Kim, is behind the shares sale.
According to JoongAng Ilbo, various major entities had taken an interest in the stake. These include Tencent and Kakao, both of which are currently pursuing cryptocurrency-related projects of their own.
Disney, however, is allegedly first in line, with Kim personally reaching out to the US corporation.
Should the $13.2 billion deal go ahead, however, Disney will have access to European exchange Bitstamp via NXC’s investment structure NXMH, which purchased it for around $400 million in late 2018.
Also under control would be South Korean mainstream platform Korbit, in which Nexon has a 65 percent stake.
Rumors Of A Done Deal
According to the Herald, the NXC mogul had held a soft spot for Disney for some time, spurring the belief that the deal would likely have a specific outcome.
“What I envy the most about Disney is that they do not force money out of kids… (consumers) gladly pay Disney. Nexon has a long way to go. Some people hate Nexon to death,” it quotes him as saying in 2015.
Disney itself has hardly any experience in the cryptocurrency industry, with the exception of a lackluster ICO project dubbed ‘DragonChain’ in 2017.
While the new owner could thus jettison its newly-acquired crypto portfolio, the track record of both platforms could yet prove appealing as the cryptocurrency market undergoes its latest renaissance.
Last week, Bitstamp became one of the few businesses to complete the process of gaining a BitLicense certification to serve users in New York.
“We look forward to carrying the lessons we’ve learned in Europe over the ocean and helping to develop a better environment for all crypto businesses, both in the US and worldwide,” the company wrote in an accompanying blog post.
Korbit also continues to press on despite the 2018 bear market proving tough on its financial health.
This month, figures showed net annual losses for the previous twelve months totalled around 45 billion won ($40 million), still less than market heavyweight Bithumb, which shed closer to $180 million.
What do you think about Disney potentially gaining a stake in Bitstamp and Korbit? Let us know in the comments below!
Images via Shutterstock, Bitcoinist archives