While in most recent years some upstarts such as FTX or Binance have stealing somewhat the show as “casino of choice” for newcomers & retail in the Crypto space, OG Bitcoin exchange platform Bitfinex has held up well all these years and remains the trading platform of choice for most veteran crypto traders, Bitcoin OGs and “whales”.
Bitfinex – home of the whales
This also can be seen in the design choices of the platform which appeals in its arrangements to more seasoned traders which prefer a clean interface without being distracted by various bells & whistles and pop-ups which try to trigger the inexperienced retail trader into taking actions which might prove fatal to their capital stock in the long (or short) term.
Accordingly the design of the platform is tailored to those who are looking to conduct their trading activities in a quick and concise manner; making it easy to find all the basic and advanced functionalities and settings.
The platform has almost a decade of existence in the marketplace behind it (launched in 2012) – which makes it one of the longest running Bitcoin Exchange platforms still in existence today.
For a while after the tragic end of Mt. Gox, Bitfinex battled and ultimately conquered the position as the world’s number 1 Bitcoin trading platform – a streak which only ended in 2017 when Chinese newcomer Binance managed to capture large market shares via rapid listing of various ICO projects of dubious background. The Chinese upcomers managed to capture a large part of the newcomers wave which were getting lured in by the bombastic marketing announcements of various “crypto projects” which were looking for a place to dump their freshly minted tokens onto the public in exchange for real Bitcoin.
Bitfinex early history – shocks, shake-ups and resilience
Bitfinex’ history was not without shadows and incidents. Initially built on the codebase left over by failed Bitcoin Exchange Bitcoinica, the issues plaguing the platform and its users in the old days (pressing a button twice could lead back in the old days to suddenly open a position in the opposite direction of the intended trade ) are part of the veteran traders & Bitcoin OG lore from the olden days.
The darkest day for Bitfinex came in August 2016 when the platform suffered a loss of 119,756 Bitcoin – bringing the platform on the verge of collapse and causing anxiety among a large share of active Bitcoin traders to get stripped blank again after the implosion of Mt. Gox just two years earlier.
However, in a concerted effort the Bitfinex team layed out a plan to make all their users whole who had to suffer a haircut on their balances as result of the hack.
The committed work by the Bitfinex leadership to pull the platform out of the mud together with the strong support for the plan received by various Bitcoin OG’s who were often some of the largest users of the platform lead to the issuance of an IOU token by Bitfinex with the stated goal to repay the IOU’s from the generated trading fee profits over time.
With the 2017 bull market as a timely tailwind Bitfinex pulled off one of the most admirable comebacks in the fraud- and incompetence-plagued first decade of the Cryptocurrency space.
All IOU token holders ultimately got made whole – which furthered the trust given by significant parts of the Bitcoin OG community to Bitfinex given the demonstrated willingness to make up for their failures.
The shock of the 2016 hack also led to a complete overhaul of the platform. The efforts led by iconic CTO Paolo Ardoino together with the guidance provided by the old school Crypto Trader crowd around the Whaleclub/Whalepool communities resulted in a trading platform which clearly has found its place, catering to the seasoned veteran traders of the industry.
As such, the platform has over all the years kept one of the most liquid order books in the BTC_USD market; being a reliable and trusted home for many of the whales stemming from the old days.
Tether controversy & reduced counterparty risk
While the controversy around the world’s most dominant stablecoin Tether – an organization with very tight personal and corporate connection to Bitfinex – has been ongoing for more than half a decade by now, one often overlooked trading on Bitfinex is the following:
While if you trade on a different platform, you have to bear the risk of a Tether default *and* the platform risk (hacks, exit scams and similar) – utilizing Bitfinex as your trading platform of choice reduces the counterparty risk to the need to trust one organization only (Tether/Bitfinex in this case), rather than trusting Tether *and* some possibly shady 2nd or 3rd rate shitcoin exchange.
Driver of innovation
Last but not least, Bitfinex has in recent years put significant efforts and resources into developing the Bitcoin ecosystem further.
By being the first major player to build out a proper integration with the Lightning Network and running some of the networks highest capacity nodes, the Bitfinex team actively sped up the adoption of the Lightning Network in a significant manner.
If you are looking to test out the Bitfinex platform, you can sign up via the link below: