The investigation on the collapsed cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox, which started in April at the Tokyo District Court, is underway.
The meeting between the trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi and the creditors was organized this November. After the meeting, Kobayashi claimed that Kraken, a bitcoin exchange based in San Francisco, will participate in the investigation process and recovery of the lost bitcoins. Kraken was selected from a list of other companies due to its experience in bitcoin transactions and stable exchange operations.
“The bankruptcy trustee believes that it is very helpful for conducting the bankruptcy proceedings smoothly and for protecting the interests of the bankruptcy creditors to obtain support from a company with expertise in operating a Bitcoin exchange business and managing Bitcoin transactions.” said Nobuaki Kobayashi.
Although the possible revival of bitcoin exchange was recently discussed in the bitcoin community, Kobayashi stated Mt. Gox will not be revived.
Jesse Powell CEO of Kraken exchange, wrote in a blog post: “The outcome of the Mt. Gox bankruptcy proceedings will deeply affect the Bitcoin community as a whole,” and he added, “We’ve decided to volunteer our resources and expertise in an attempt to minimize damage to creditors, restore faith in the Bitcoin community and demonstrate trusted leadership in the industry.”
According to Kobayashi, 202,149.2273849 bitcoins have been already found, while the rest is still missing. All the bitcoins are expected to be returned to the 127,000 owners in 2015. Kraken noted that money will likely be paid out in digital currency, although the final decision has not been taken yet.
“Provided the trustee decides to distribute Bitcoin, creditors may be asked to create a Kraken account, if they do not already have one, to establish a secure, efficient and cost-effective platform for the distribution,” the company stated on its website.
The former Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles is currently involved in the bankruptcy process and works together with Kobayashi and Kraken. He now serves as CEO of Tibanne, the owner of Mt.Gox.
Kobayashi said that Karpeles will likely be obliged to repay $ 1.1 million he loaned from the exchange and his company Tibanne owes Mt. Gox nearly $ 10 million.
The value of bitcoin has yet not recovered after the closure of Mt. Gox in February, which had its negative impact on bitcoin price. Besides, many investors, who kept their money in the exchange, faced huge losses as well.
The cryptocurrency decreased by over 50% since its price peak in November 2013, just before the collapse.
At the same time, the bitcoin transaction volumes have significantly increased, due to the growing number of merchants using the cryptocurrency. Bitcoin price is currently estimated at about $323.