Sony to launch Japanese crypto exchange S.BLOX following Amber acquisition

    Tech giant Sony is dipping its toes in the cryptocurrency sector. The $100 billion Japanese conglomerate is rebranding a local crypto trading platform in this regard.

    According to a statement, Sony has acquired WhaleFin and rebranded it as S.BLOX Co. The platform will collaborate with other businesses under Sony’s umbrella to generate value for its crypto trading services.

    Sony’s foray into cryptocurrency market

    The move follows Sony’s acquisition of Singapore-based market maker Amber in August 2023. The acquisition went through via Quetta Web Co., Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Group Corporation. 

    Meanwhile, WhaleFin, previously dubbed DeCurret, was initially acquired by Amber Group’s Japanese subsidiary in 2022 and renamed WhaleFin. 

    Amber Group faced financial troubles following the collapse of FTX in late 2022. Approximately 10% of the group’s trading capital was with the defunct FTX platform at the time.

    The group underwent a debt-to-equity transaction with Fenbushi Capital as part of its financial restructuring in response to the implosion.

    In April 2023, the group announced its intentions to sell its Japan unit.

    Subsequently, Sony has acquired Amber Group as part of its plans to enter the cryptocurrency space. At the time of publication, the exact terms of the deal remained undisclosed.

    As a part of the acquisition, S.BLOX will completely revamp its design and user interface. The platform will also launch a mobile application to further boost usability.

    There is no provided launch date provided at the time of publication. However, the release noted that the platform will expand supported currencies and functionalities.

    Meanwhile, Sota Watanabe, founder and CEO of Startale Labs, revealed in an X post that Startale’s external director will head Sony’s new crypto exchange.

    The Sony group had announced its plans for a joint venture with Startail Labs in September 2023. The goal was to develop a global infrastructure to support web3 initiatives via its own public blockchain network.

    Sony was also behind a 500 million yen seed round raised by Startail Labs the same year.

    Sony’s history with web3

    This isn’t Sony’s first foray into the web3 space. The tech giant had previously filed for a patent for “super-fungible tokens” to use NFTs as tradeable in-game assets. 

    The PlayStation maker had joined hands with Astar Network for a Web3 incubation program in February 2023. Further, It announced a motion-tracking metaverse wearable called Mocopi the previous year. 

    More recently, Sony has partnered with German tech giant Seimens. The two companies plan on launching a mixed-reality headset in 2024 with a focus on developers.

    The post Sony to launch Japanese crypto exchange S.BLOX following Amber acquisition appeared first on Invezz

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