Huobi Opens Office in Russia, Plans Startup Accelerator and Mining Hotels
The Russian branch of digital asset exchange Huobi is scheduled to open on Nov. 12 with a Russian-language website and local support services. The global cryptocurrency company wants to support Russian startups and mining projects, in addition to launching an educational program.
Huobi Global Senior Director Edward Chen and Andrei Grachev, head of the Russian office, announced the launch date during the
Blockchain Life conference in Saint Petersburg this week. They revealed that the branch will provide 24-hour online support and maintain a call center with Russian-speaking account managers. Huobi, which is currently the third-largest cryptocurrency exchange by daily trading volume, plans to establish an accelerator for blockchain projects, Russian news outlet Bitnovosti reported. The incubator will look for promising startups in partnership with a network of regional chambers of commerce throughout the Russian Federation.
Huobi’s office will also launch an educational program that will focus on cryptocurrency and distributed ledger technologies. The exchange will cooperate with leading Russian universities and other organizations on the initiative. Plekhanov University of Economics, the oldest Russian business school, and the prestigious Moscow State Institute of International Relations are already among its partners, according to Grachev. Students will be trained in the specifics of digital asset management and taught about the automated and algorithmic trading services offered by Huobi.
The Singapore-based company also intends to participate in the development of so-called
mining hotels in Russia. In recent months, the number of these facilities has been growing exponentially, as they offer relatively inexpensive “accommodation” for small mining farms, which tend to be too noisy and energy-thirsty to be housed in offices and homes. Rental rates depend on the power rating of the mining devices. For example, ASIC and GPU rigs can be installed in a Moscow-based hotel for between 1,100 and 3,200 rubles a month (~$17 – $48) plus 5 rubles (less than $0.08) per kWh of consumed electricity.
The news about the Russian office comes after Huobi’s recent announcement of plans to expand its operations into new cryptocurrency markets around the world, including Africa, South Asia and the Middle East. In October, the company revealed its intention to set up a regional head office in Dubai. Much like the Russian office, the branch in the United Arab Emirates will not only facilitate digital asset trading, but also focus on blockchain project incubation and educational services for customers in the three regions.
The company, which has Chinese roots, revealed earlier this year that it will also launch platforms in the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia and Canada, in cooperation with local organizations and companies. Vnesheconombank, a government-owned development bank, is its partner in the Russian Federation.
This past summer, Huobi announced the launch of a new cryptocurrency trading service targeting institutional investors. And in August, it presented Huobi Cloud, a platform that allows other companies to offer digital asset trading services using the existing infrastructure of one of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges.