Nova Exchange is a Swedish centralized cryptocurrency exchange, launched in 2016. According to information in local media, in May 2018, the exchange was acquired by the Swedish blockchain technology company Goobit AB. At the time of this writing, the Nova Exchange’s website points out that “the Services and Nova Exchange brand are owned and controlled by Goobit Exchange AB (“Goobit”), a Swedish corporation having its registered address at Box 3332, 10367 Stockholm, Sweden, registration number 559156-2367.” It continues to say that Goobit Exchange AB is a subsidiary to Goobit AB 556911-9992, a company entitled to provide currency exchange and other financial services in accordance with the Act on Certain Financial Operations (Reporting Duty) (1996:1006). When we dig deeper, we find that Goobit AB is the company behind the Swedish broker Btcx. The CEO of Goobit AB is Oskar Söderström, an individual with long-lasting managerial experience in various Swedish businesses.
In October 2017, the exchange admitted it was about to shut down for an upgrade and to prepare the platform for its new owners. Although at the time, this was well-communicated via multiple emails and public statements, numerous users report that they have ended up unprepared for the closure. A few days before the closing, the exchange’s team warned that all remaining user balances that had not been withdrawn before April 1st, 2018 would be considered a donation that was not refundable. This resulted in the loss of funds for clients who missed the deadline and raised doubts in investors about the real reason for the shutdown. However, the exchange stick to its word and went live once again in May 2018 with new management and improved platform.
When it comes to the exchange’s reputation, it is worth noting that, at the time of this writing, the majority of the user reviews are positive. However, most user reports have one, and the same thing in common – the exchange often goes through maintenance breaks without prior warning or some sort of public communication. Due to the shaky world of cryptocurrency exchanges, this often causes unrest among the users’ base.
Regarding security, the exchange does not mention to employ any specific measures, different from those of other cryptocurrency platforms (two-factor authentication, password, passphrase, pin, etc.). However, Nova’s users should know that, as a trading venue located in one of the most trusted and well-regulated countries in the world, Sweden, their data and accounts are protected by multiple legislative frameworks. For example, on its website, the exchange points out that Goobit, as the company behind the trading business, protects itself from involvement in any activity that facilitates money laundering or other criminal activities by following the Swedish Financial Authorities guidance for AML (FFFS 2017:11, Finansinspektionens föreskrifter om åtgÄrder mot penningtvÄtt och finansiering av terrorism”). In fact, Nova Exchange was the first Swedish cryptocurrency exchange, registered with the Swedish FSA (Finansinspektionen).
However, the exchange highlights that it does not have the ability to prevent hacker attacks or mitigate their implications. It also adds that it does not “warrant the safety of the Platform and is not liable for any lost value or stolen property, whether or not Goobit was negligent in providing the proper security.” The exchange advises its clients to address claims or disputes, should they have such, to the National Board for Consumer Disputes (ARN) in Sweden.
Regarding customer support, it is worth noting that the exchange offers various channels, such as social media, email, and the so-called “Trollbox”. The feature represents a form of a live chat but not a private one. All users can interact directly with one another, while there are also moderators who answer questions and take part in the discussion. It is an easy way to have a question answered in a timely manner.
A few months after the exchange was launched and before it was acquired by Goobit, it became a victim of a hacker attack. Although the losses were minor, the team behind the project, at the time, immediately came out and notified all users to get their coins out of the exchange as soon as possible. The also started rejecting deposits and tried to mitigate the extent of the damage. Although some users report waiting for too long to get a response from the team, in the end, all client issues were addressed. The exchange handled the whole situation very professionally, which helped in shaping a positive public opinion.
Since then, Nova adopted as its own mission the idea of helping victims of cryptocurrency hacks by organizing fundraising campaigns. For example, after the Cryptopia hack in June 2019, Nova listed all tokens that were previously on the attacked exchange without charging for it.
At the time of this writing, there are no reported government investigations against Nova Exchange.