Localbitcoins Shuts Down After More Than Ten Years

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  • Famous Bitcoin exchange Localbitcoins has closed its doors after more than ten years
  • The company blamed the crypto winter and “various challenges” for its closure
  • Users responded with their memories of the service

Localbitcoins, the cryptocurrency exchange that introduced many to the world of Bitcoin, has announced that it is to cease operations after more than a decade of operation. The exchange, the most famous peer-to-peer Bitcoin website in the world, cited the “ongoing very cold crypto-winter” as the reason for its closure, but in truth its days were numbered when regulations forced it to stop offering a cash service, at which point it was already being usurped by other exchanges anyway.

Localbitcoins Lost Ground to Remote Exchanges

Localbitcoins was founded in 2012 in Finland and quickly became the place to buy and sell bitcoin – users would arrange a physical meeting point and conduct the deal in person. This seems unthinkable now, but back in those days it was one of the few ways to buy and sell, especially with the only other option, MtGox, increasing its regulatory oversight at the time.

Localbitcoins was very popular until the likes of Binance and FTX took the crypto world by storm, with users gravitating to their platforms and leaving Localbitcoins in the dust. The writing was on the wall when the company was forced to stop cash transactions in June 2019, by which point it was known to be a hotspot for illegal Bitcoin activity.

Users Remember the Good Times

The three years since this action have seen Localbitcoins enact its regulatory responsibilities and as a result slip further into irrelevance, until today it has become an echo of a former time. This led to today’s inevitable announcement:

The news prompted many to remember their own experiences of using Localbitcoins and thank the company for helping to increase awareness and adoption:

Gone, but never forgotten.