TypePrivately held company
FounderStar Xu
Area served
Key people
Jay Hao (CEO)
Haider Rafique (CMO)
ProductsBitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Cryptocurrency Exchange
Number of employees
1,000+ (2020)

OKX (simplified Chinese: 欧易; traditional Chinese: 歐易), formerly known as OKEx, is a Seychelles-based cryptocurrency exchange and derivatives exchange that provides a platform for trading various instruments such as spot and derivative. Some of the exchange's core features include spot and derivative trading. It was founded by Star Xu (徐明星) in 2017.[2] OKX is owned by Ok Group, which also owns crypto exchange Okcoin.[3][4] It is not available to US based investors.[5] The company's CEO is Jay Hao[6] and CMO is Haider Rafique.[7]

Initially headquartered in Beijing, China,[8] OKX is now under a blanket ban by Chinese regulators. [9] On October 13, 2021, it issued a "Notice on Regulatory Policy in Mainland China", announcing that it would continue its policy of "withdrawing from the Chinese mainland market" and would not establish an office or team in the region. [10] However, according to Caixin, although the exchange officially announced that it would no longer set up an office in Mainland China, it still has a large number of R&D staff working in the region, including engineers, who continue to work for OKX in the form of third-party outsourcing companies. [11]


The company was launched by Star Xu in 2017 and is headquartered in Seychelles.[5]


On April 11, 2018, the company announced its expansion to Malta, given the country's efforts to provide a sound regulatory framework for blockchain businesses and digital asset exchanges.[12]

In May 2018, the exchange became the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange by reported turnover.[13]

In June 2018, the platform became one of the largest exchanges to launch and offer a cryptocurrency exchange white label service, where applicants must have solid industry experience and $2.5 million in their accounts.[14]


In November 2019, new digital asset exchange rules were announced by the Hong Kong Securities & Futures Commission (SFC). According to Reuters, OKX said that they don't expect to see many exchanges opting into the new regulations, but said the new rules are positive for the industry.[15]

On November 19, 2019, the cryptocurrency exchange said that they previously opened their Indian Telegram group a year prior to opening their Indian operations.[16]

On November 25, 2019, the company announced four major partners for its global utility token "OKB".[17]


According to Reuters, in February 2021 OKX saw their biggest trading volume in history, up 26% from the previous month to $188 billion.[18] Typically after a new cryptocurrency coin listing on OKX, the new coin has showed a positive price jump five days later.[19]

In June 2021, keywords such as "OKEx", "Binance" and "Huobi" were blocked by Baidu, Weibo and other Chinese Internet platforms.[20]


In January 2022, OKEx rebranded to OKX.[21][22]

In March 2022, OKX rejected calls to ban Russian crypto trading.[23] In the same month, football team Manchester City F.C announced a partnership with OKX as their official cryptocurrency partner.[24][25] In May 2022, OKX signed a sponsorship deal with McLaren as a primary partner.[26]

Criticism and controversies

On February 24, 2018, the Dongguan Public Security Bureau officially opened a criminal case against OKX for possible "illegal futures trading" or, more seriously, "fraud".[27]

In March 2018, some major cryptocurrency exchanges were said to be charging up to one million dollars to have their tokens listed. In a response to Insider, a PR manager for OKX denied this, saying there are no listing fees for any tokens.[28]

On March 10, 2018, Sylvain Ribes, a trader and investor, published an article titled Chasing fake volume: a crypto-plague, in which he concluded from an analysis of publicly available data that approximately 93% of trading volume on OKX was faked.[29]

On July 30, 2018, a trader reportedly bought bitcoin futures with a $416 million notional value on margin, before being forced by the exchange to liquidate his position at a large loss. The exchange injected 2,500 Bitcoins - worth about $18 million at current prices - into an insurance fund to help minimize the impact on clients. However, to cover for the outstanding amount, traders who had made an unrealized profit during the previous week still had to pay a clawback rate of 17 percent, so-called "socialized clawback".[30]

OKX has experienced several downtime incidents, the most serious of which occurred on September 5, 2018, in which the exchange suddenly experienced problems such as app flashbacks, inability to log into the platform, and inability to view contracts. Subsequently, many investors crowded Beijing, where the institution was headquartered at the time, to defend their rights.[31] On the evening of the 10th of the same month, the founder of the exchange, Star Xu, was summoned by the Shanghai public security authorities to assist in the investigation for alleged digital currency fraud.[32]

In October 2019, Star Xu and Yongxing Yang had a dispute that was frequently mentioned. Yang broke the news to the media that several of his own accounts on the OKX platform had been frozen and cancelled for no reason, with assets worth a combined total of about 800 million RMB vanishing into thin air, and that a case against OKX and Star Xu by him and other investors had been officially filed in the Hangzhou Internet Court.[33]

On October 16, 2020 OKX temporarily suspended withdrawals following its founder's alleged arrest.[34][35] On November 19, 2020 OKX announced that withdrawals would reopen and will resume on or before November 27.[36]

See also


  1. ^ Jing Yang. "Digital currencies and the virtual currency in the sense of financial regulation". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on May 24, 2021.
  2. ^ "Malta's Authorities Remain Committed to Making Country a "Blockchain Island," Despite Binance and Other Crypto Exchanges Not Being Licensed". Crowd Fund Insider. March 1, 2020. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
  3. ^ "OKEx Review: Pros, Cons, and More | The Ascent by Motley Fool". The Motley Fool. July 26, 2021. Retrieved August 6, 2021.
  4. ^ "Squid Game's star cast-promoted Klaycity to list crypto token on OKX". mint. March 17, 2022. Retrieved March 19, 2022.
  5. ^ a b "OKX Review". Investopedia. Retrieved March 19, 2022.
  6. ^ Zmudzinski, Adrian. "OKEx Rebrands To OKX, Expands Into Financial Services". Benzinga. Retrieved June 15, 2022.
  7. ^ Coffee, Patrick (June 1, 2022). "Tribeca Festival Signs Crypto Trading Desk OKX as Its New Top Sponsor". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved June 15, 2022.
  8. ^ "China hits hard on virtual currency trading". China Securities Journal. November 23, 2019.
  9. ^ "China bans virtual currency trading altogether". National Development and Reform Commission. September 27, 2021.
  10. ^ "OKEx Announces Maintaining "Exit from Mainland China" Policy". Interface News. October 13, 2021.
  11. ^ "Huobi to stop trading for users in mainland China". Lianhe Zaobao. December 7, 2021.
  12. ^ Tan, Andrea. "Another Giant Cryptocurrency Exchange Is Moving To Tiny Malta". Bloomberg. Retrieved August 11, 2018.
  13. ^ Lam, Eric. "OKEx CEO Resigns Just as Crypto Exchange Becomes World's Biggest". Bloomberg. Retrieved January 8, 2019.
  14. ^ "OKEx to Launch Cryptocurrency Exchange White Label Service". Finance Magnates. June 20, 2018. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  15. ^ "OSL leaps on new Hong Kong rules with crypto exchange license bid". Reuters. November 7, 2019. Retrieved September 15, 2020.
  16. ^ "Telegram takes off in India as startups drive adoption". India Times. November 19, 2019. Retrieved September 15, 2020.
  17. ^ "Bitcoin Daily: Singapore Blockchain Firm To Boost Philippine Startups With $300K Fund; OKEx Crypto Exchange Lands New Partners For OKB Coin". PYMNTS. November 25, 2019. Retrieved August 28, 2020.
  18. ^ "Cryptocurrency trading volumes spike 17% in February". Reuters. March 5, 2021. Retrieved April 1, 2021.
  19. ^ "Excitement over the 'Coinbase effect' is spilling over ahead of its stock market debut". Fortune. April 7, 2021. Retrieved April 13, 2021.
  20. ^ "Baidu, Weibo block keywords "Binance" "Huobi" "OKEx"". International Financial Times. June 10, 2021.
  21. ^ "OKEx Rebrands To OKX, Expands Into Financial Services". Benzinga. January 18, 2022. Retrieved January 18, 2022.
  22. ^ "OKX rebrands as cross-platform services provider". IBS Intelligence. Retrieved January 18, 2022.
  23. ^ PYMNTS (March 2, 2022). "Binance, OKX Reject Ban on Russian Crypto". www.pymnts.com. Retrieved March 19, 2022.
  24. ^ Birnbaum, Justin. "Manchester City Announces Multimillion-Dollar Deal With Crypto Exchange OKX". Forbes. Retrieved March 19, 2022.
  25. ^ "Manchester City sign 'multimillion dollar' OKX crypto exchange deal". SportsPro. March 7, 2022. Retrieved March 19, 2022.
  27. ^ Li Feifan. "The full investigation of the suspected fraud of Star Xu's OKX". Sina. April 20, 2018.
  28. ^ "Crypto exchanges are charging up to $1 million per ICO to list tokens: 'It's pure capitalism'". Insider Inc. March 12, 2018. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
  29. ^ Sharma, Rakesh (September 28, 2018). "Are Crypto's High Trading Volumes a Scam?". Investopedia.
  30. ^ Robertson, Benjamin; Tan, Andrea; Nakamura, Yuki (August 3, 2018). "Bitcoin Whale's Bad Trade Leaves Counterparties Holding the Bag". Bloomberg News. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  31. ^ "Virtual exchanges may be involved in economic crimes". Sina. January 26, 2021.
  32. ^ "OKX Founder Star Xu Was Summoned by Shanghai Public Security Authorities to Assist in Digital Currency Fraud Investigation". Sina. September 11, 2018.
  33. ^ "15 Billion RMB Worth of Bitcoins Cannot Be Withdrawn from OKEx Exchange". Securities Times. October 17, 2020.
  34. ^ Hu Yue and Denise Jia (October 17, 2020). "Exclusive: OKEx Suspends Cryptocurrency Withdrawals After Founder's Arrest". Caixin Global. Archived from the original on November 3, 2020.
  35. ^ Olga Kharif."Frozen OKEx Crypto Traders Can Cash Out, But Would Pay a Price". Bloomberg News. October 22, 2020. Archived from the original on January 4, 2022.
  36. ^ Joanna Ossinger and Zheping Huang (November 19, 2020). "Chinese Crypto Mogul Emerges After Probe That Forced OKEx Halt". Bloomberg News. Archived from the original on June 26, 2021.