After operating for more than ten years, the Finland-based peer-to-peer (P2P) Bitcoin platform LocalBitcoins, is shutting down operations. On February 9th, LocalBitcoins announced that the company was ceasing operations due to challenging market conditions.
LocalBitcoins CEO Nikolaus Kangas stated that “regardless of our efforts to overcome challenges and turn our trade volumes and declining market share back to growth, we have regretfully concluded that LocalBitcoins can no longer provide its Bitcoin trading service.”
All users were urged by LocalBitcoins to remove their funds from the service as soon as possible from their LocalBitcoins wallet. Users can withdraw their funds from LocalBitcoins within the next 12 months.
The termination schedule states that starting on February 9th, LocalBitcoins would immediately suspend all new registrations. On February 16th, trading will be put on hold, and users will then only be allowed to access their wallets to withdraw their Bitcoin.
Data from Coin Dance shows that after reaching an all-time high in December 2017, the overall trading volume on LocalBitcoins has been declining.
In February 2021, LocalBitcoins’ weekly Bitcoin trading volume fell below 1,000 BTC, and have been unable to return to those levels since. The most recent weekly BTC trading volumes on LocalBitcoins were 283 BTC, or almost $6 million. In contrast, larger exchanges like Coinbase transact $282 million worth of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency per day.