Embattled former leader of MtGox, Mark Karpeles, has come out of his cave. He first resurfaced a couple of weeks ago with a series of Tweets unrelated to his former business. One was related to a beautiful sunset in Tokyo. His tweets generated anger and bewilderment from other Twitter users wondering if he has any remorse for the nearly half-billion dollars worth of bitcoins lost on his exchange.
Karpeles has now confronted the topic in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. Karpeles felt “scared, frustrated and angry” when he realized what happened in February. He had many sleepless nights since then, saying, “I was always worried: What if all the bitcoins got stolen?”
He believes that in addition to the alleged theft of bitcoins by hacking, there were physical break-ins to the company’s offices and that at least one former employee stole data. He recommends having 24-hour security to anyone wanting to start a Bitcoin exchange.
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Indeed, his biggest regret was not having hired experienced executives to assist his running of the company. Yet at the same time, there wasn’t much money to do so. Despite the exchange’s clientele exploding 20-fold since buying the exchange from Jed McCaleb, profits were insufficient to do so. Being the only executive, however, he was not able to handle the rapid growth on his own.
Although 200,000 of the 850,000 coins were “rediscovered” in March, Karpeles that the remaining coins at large will not be found.
He has since worked on keeping MtGox’s parent business, Tibanne, afloat by trying to find new customers. He is also trying to auction off domain names like bitcoins.com and akb.com in an effort to keep his other businesses alive and pay off creditors. He didn’t say whether mtgox.com is for sale.
Moving forward, he would like to see the exchange revived but is opposed to efforts by Sunlot Holdings, which want to use portion of the customer funds to do so. Though he wants to stay far away from bitcoins, he would like to to participate in Tokyo meetings and share his experiences with startups so that they know “what they should do and shouldn’t”.