EQONEX fires CEO Richard Byworth, eyes merger or takeover

Rick Steves

EQONEX is a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Singapore and an over-the-counter trading platform working with hot and cold custodian Digivault, and asset manager Bletchley Park.

EQONEX is engaged in a broad review of the strategic direction of the digital assets financial services company operating a crypto exchange and an over-the-counter trading platform.

As part of that, the board has determined that chief executive Richard Byworth will step down with immediate effect and be replaced by COO Andrew Eldon as the interim CEO. The company is also evaluating merger or takeover options with third parties.

First NASDAQ-listed crypto exchange at a crossroads

This might come as quite a shock as the NASDAQ-listed crypto exchange formerly known as Diginex was making several hires in order to expand its business internationally.

In July, the firm published its earnings report for the fiscal year of 2021, showing an adjusted EBITDA with a loss of US$33.5 million which was slightly greater than the $32.5 million loss that was shown in the previous fiscal year.

The EQONEX digital exchange was launched in July 2020 and has seen some strong growth in recent months with the daily average volume crossing $15 million as of March 31, 2021, and it was expected to act as a springboard for more volumes in the upcoming fiscal year of 2022 as the average daily volume crossed $180 million as of June 2021.

The company became the first crypto exchange company to be listed on the NASDAQ in October 2020.

Chi-Won Yoon, Chairman of EQONEX said: “We are actively progressing strategic opportunities we believe will be transformational to our business. Andrew has a clear understanding of our mission and will bring considerable energy and experience to his expanded role. Andrew’s focus in the short-term will be on operational execution, ensuring EQONEX delivers on existing plans and maximises current opportunities.”

Andrew Eldon, the Chief Operating Officer and now interim CEO is an industry veteran who joined EQONEX from HSBC, where he most recently served as Group Head of Customer Growth & Advocacy and built and scaled PayMe – HSBC’s award-winning payments app with over 2.5 million customers.

The experienced senior executive has a track record in building and scaling digital businesses, operations, product development, product, and digital marketing and strategy design. Prior to HSBC, he worked in senior marketing, advisory and consulting roles in the retail, eCommerce, and professional services sectors.

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EQONEX has institutional sales team set up

In October, the company led by Richard Byworth at the time made a series of hires as part of its bid to expand globally. The firm hired Alex Phillips as Group Head of Sales.

In addition to Alex Phillips, EQONEX appointed Malcolm Baker as Head of Group Sales for the European region. He has worked with the CME Group in Asia and most recently founded FX FWD Ltd, a company formed to provide a lightweight, robust FX Swaps Pricing solution to global traders and Brokers.

The hiring spree also included Matthew Allott as Asset Management Head of Sales, Metin Simsek as Head of Investment Products for Germany, and Bjorn Rosendahl as the Head of Sales for Custody.

EQONEX is a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Singapore and an over-the-counter trading platform working with hot and cold custodian Digivault, and asset manager Bletchley Park.

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