Talking tech since 2003

After yesterday’s news of the shutdown of Mt. Gox—formerly one of the largest bitcoin exchanges in the world, and certainly still the most famous (or infamous)—people have been watching and waiting for any signs of life at the Tokyo-based company. Today, the Mt. Gox website has been updated with a statement from CEO Mark Karpeles, whose whereabouts yesterday were something of a mystery.

The short version of his statement: I’m working on it.

Said Karpeles:

“Dear MtGox Customers,

As there is a lot of speculation regarding MtGox and its future, I would like to use this opportunity to reassure everyone that I am still in Japan, and working very hard with the support of different parties to find a solution to our recent issues.

Furthermore I would like to kindly ask that people refrain from asking questions to our staff: they have been instructed not to give any response or information. Please visit this page for further announcements and updates.

Sincerely,
Mark Karpeles”

The good news we can take from this statement is that it signals hope for the recovery of the estimated 744,000 bitcoins that went missing in the shutdown yesterday, said to be roughly six percent of all bitcoins in existence. Estimates peg the value of those bitcoins at roughly $400 million.

Karpeles also sent a statement to Reuters via email in the wake of yesterday’s reports:

“We should have an official announcement ready soon-ish. We are currently at a turning point for the business. I can’t tell much more for now as this also involves other parties.”

There’s speculation from different sources as to what that turning point might mean. A post on Re/code reports that it has received word from “a group of bitcoin companies, which included Coinbase, Circle and BTC China” via a spokesperson, who said “Mt. Gox has confirmed it will file bankruptcy in private discussions with other members of the bitcoin community.”

However, a post on CNET points out that on Monday, the HTML code on Mt. Gox’s website had included text saying “put announce for mtgox acq here.” Considering Karpeles statement that the business’s “turning point” also “involves other parties” would seem to indicate that an acquisition is in the offing. In general, filing for bankruptcy isn’t the kind of thing that you need to wait on anyone else to do.

Currently, much of the commentary regarding Mt. Gox’s implosion explains that the company is something of a sacrifice to ensure the virtual currency’s long-term survival. An editorial on TechCrunch opines that Mt. Gox’s fall is proving the need for better oversight and regulation within the bitcoin community, and that other exchanges will reap the benefits of Mt. Gox’s mistakes.

If nothing else, let’s hope that the investments that had gone missing in Mt. Gox’s downtime are recovered soon.

[Sources: ReutersRe/code, CNET]


Comments

Sign in or become a BestTechie member to join the conversation.
Just enter your email below to get a log in link.

Subscribe to BestTechie Plus

You've successfully subscribed to BestTechie
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
Great! You've successfully signed up.
Your link has expired
Success! Your account is fully activated, you now have access to all content.