The battle of the Asian exchanges: DEX or doom?

Quick Take

  • Binance’s DEX faces its first major competition from Kucoin, which is steering towards a hybrid solution
  • It is going live today with the Arwen protocol, which allows traders to self-custody and protects their assets in the event of a hack. It hence removes the need to trust the middleman.
  • The move suggests Asian exchanges are beginning to look more seriously at decentralised options to differentiate themselves
  • Kucoin’s approach of decentralising only the custody element deviates from pure DEX solutions. But is it attractive enough?

$1.4 billion. That’s how much thieves have stolen in total from third-party crypto exchanges, according to research by The Block in February. Not to mention the QuadrigaCX debacle.

It should come as no surprise then that allowing users to secure their assets while trading is an important differentiator for exchanges. That’s where DEXs – or decentralised exchanges – have started to be of interest; essentially, dApps that allow for peer-to-peer trading and provide liquidity; making them hack-proof.