Photo: Vitaliy Bodnar
The key condition for the sale – Russian users should be blocked until Russia's invasion of Ukraine ends.
In the early days of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, BTC-Alpha CEO Vitaliy Bodnar announced the creation of a crypto fund to assistance to the Ukrainian military hospital. However, the Russian media discussed other news – BTC-Alpha also announced the complete blocking of users from the Russian Federation.
"This news was discussed on all business channels in Russia, they said that there are such bad guys who blocked Russian users. But I couldn't stay away. I wanted to bethe first big raindropthat will make others from the larger exchanges think and assess the situation”, – said Vitaly Bodnar, who was born and raised in Ukraine.
About 300 thousand traders were blocked.
"About 60% of our active audience– it was Russia. For a businessman, this is tantamount to cutting off his arm or leg. This hit not only finances, but also some personal ambitions and desires. When you see that you need to help Ukraine, and your money is melting, it is demoralizing, & ndash; Vitaly admits.
"As soon as the war ends, they will have access to them"
These 60% of traders remain blocked today. But the funds still remain the property of those users.
"We are not pirates, we are not robbers, this is not our method and not our way. These are user-specific funds, and as soon as it is legally possible, as soon as the war is over, they will have access to them, & ndash; notes the founder of BTC-Alpha.
After six months of the events in Ukraine, he says that he failed to reach out to ordinary people who are in Russia in this way. But even knowing the consequences, realizing that the war is for a long time, Vitaliy Bodnar declares that he would have done the same.
"We are often asked why you do not transfer this money to the Armed Forces of Ukraine and you will have a clear conscience. If we just steal and transfer this money, it won't be right. Any financial flow has its own energy, even for this reason this money cannot be used in this way. The main thing is that now the Russians will not be able to use this money to finance the war”, & ndash; says Bodnar.
Today, restrictions for Russian users are no longer news. "This is already a mass phenomenon, a trend. The crypto community is based on libertarian ideas. People honor freedom, honor peace, respect the privacy of others, want reasonable anonymity. This is the primary idea of cryptocurrencies, which hooked me at the very beginning. In this situation, the crypto community of the world and Ukraine showed itself very strongly. Including the crypto community of the Russian Federation, but there people are divided into two camps. I was even accused of destroying the crypto world. But I don't think so. In this situation, no one should stand aside”, & ndash; Vitaliy Bodnar is convinced.
"We need to switch to a new product"
After so many events, Vitaliy Bodnar intends to leave the post of CEO of BTC-Alpha . There are two reasons – BTC-Alpha needs fresh forces and a development vector, and Vitaly himself is starting a new project.
"I need to switch to a new product. I have devoted 8 years to BTC-Alpha. We have been working for 6 years, but there are two more years when we were negotiating, developing, promoting. Crypto exchange does not just appear – this is a colossal work.
It is logical to put some point now", – he notes.
For the post of CEO of BTC-Alpha, a competent specialist is being sought who will continue to promote and improve the exchange. In the second stage, the crypto-exchange can be put up for sale.
"We assume that the exchange will be sold to competent people who are able to further develop it. Regarding the funds of Russian users – they remain the same. Financial commitments don't go anywhere. But users remain locked out until the end of the war“, – Vitaliy Bodnar explained the terms of the sale of the exchange.
Soon he promises to present to the public his new project, which is also related to cryptocurrencies. At the start, he promises very attractive bonuses and a special promotion for Ukrainian citizens.