Kevin O’Leary says crypto exchanges will keep ‘going to zero until we force regulation’ on them

Venture capitalist Kevin O’Leary, also known as one of the major investors and once very vocal supporters of the now defunct cryptocurrency trading platform FTX, has expressed some scathing views of unregulated crypto exchanges.

As it happens, the star of the television show ‘Shark Tank’ said that digital asset exchanges would continue to end up in bankruptcy until some strong regulations are imposed on the crypto industry, according to the Twitter post he published on February 23.

His tweet attracted some strong criticism from the crypto community, the majority of which suggested that O’Leary’s current views had a lot to do with his experience with FTX, including blockchain architect MartyParty, who stressed that “FTX was never a crypto exchange” but a “honeypot designed by a traditional finance criminal.”

Others have noted that his tweet could be a jab at Binance, as the venture capitalist had hypothesized that FTX was put out of business in an intentional move by the rival crypto exchange while testifying before the Senate Banking Committee in December.

At the same time, defense lawyer John E. Deaton, popular in the crypto sphere for his coverage of the legal battle between blockchain company Ripple and the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), quoted O’Leary’s tweet and retorted by implying that he had no right to judge crypto businesses.

Specifically, Deaton was referring to the FTX founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, who is currently awaiting trial for multiple counts of fraud and has been called ‘the Bernie Madoff of crypto’ by prominent figures in the industry, including Robert Kiyosaki, the author of the personal finance book ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad.’

Urging regulation

Earlier in February, O’Leary commented on the FTX collapse, saying he didn’t expect a lot more news or dialogue to come out of it other than about recovery but that the whole situation had “poked the bear in Washington,” as it drew the decision-makers’ attention to the need for regulating crypto.

He also remained insistent that the crypto market was going to see more bankruptcies, with projections of “another meltdown to zero” that will “keep happening over and over,” and that regulation would minimize the influence of rogue players, as Finbold reported.