According to a message from Paxful Founder and CEO, Ray Youssef, the peer-to-peer bitcoin trading platform is suspending its marketplace, and the company is uncertain if it will return. Youssef cited challenges such as regulations and some key staff departures, but he also noted that he could not share the full story at this time.
Challenges Cited by Paxful CEO Ray Youssef Explain Why the P2P Bitcoin Exchange Is Suspending Its Marketplace
On April 4, 2023, Paxful released a blog post stating that the peer-to-peer Bitcoin (P2P) exchange is suspending its operations. “Today, Paxful will be suspending its marketplace,” said the trading platform’s CEO, Ray Youssef. “We are not sure if it will come back,” he added. Youssef continued by saying that the suspension may come as a shock to many and that he cannot share all the details at this time.
“I can say that we unfortunately have had some key staff departures,” Youssef wrote. “Also, regulatory challenges for the industry continue to grow, especially in the peer-to-peer market and most heavily in the U.S.”
Paxful was co-founded by Ray Youssef and Artur Schaback in July 2015, and in 2018, it became the largest P2P exchange by volume. Over the past few years, Paxful has expanded considerably into Venezuela and Africa. In June 2021, the company announced that it would donate 1% of its profits to charity. A week before the announcement that it would suspend services, Youssef informed the public that Paxful had reimbursed its Paxful Earn customers after issues related to the Celsius bankruptcy.
In a tweet on Tuesday, Youssef noted that many people were attempting to withdraw funds and transfers were taking longer than usual. “The Paxful database is a bit overloaded now as everyone is withdrawing funds, which is making transfers slow. I promise that funds are safe and will clear soon,” Youssef tweeted. Paxful is the second P2P Bitcoin exchange to close after Localbitcoins announced it was shutting down in February. The Helsinki, Finland-based Bitcoin exchange, founded in 2012, attributed the shutdown to the “ongoing crypto-winter.”
What do you think the suspension of Paxful’s marketplace means for the future of peer-to-peer Bitcoin exchanges, and how might it impact the wider cryptocurrency market and its users? Share your thoughts in the comments below.