Users of Flip, a B2C crypto platform by Fluidcoins, have been unable to access their funds for months. Fluidcoins’s acquiring company, Blockfinex, acknowledges the problem and is working towards a resolution while planning to shut down the Flip app in order to prioritise Fluidcoins’ B2B potential.

Users of Flip, an app developed by crypto startup Fluidcoins, have been facing persistent issues accessing their funds for several months now. These users, some of whom are in Flip’s Telegram group with over 300 members, have expressed frustration over the perceived indifference of Flip’s operators towards their plight. Blockfinex, a crypto exchange company that acquired Flip’s parent company Fluidcoins, told TechCabal that it is actively working to address these issues. They also shared plans to completely shut down Flip and focus on serving businesses instead of individual users.

Lamide*, a product manager told TechCabal that he had difficulties accessing his funds in October 2022 due to a KYC (know-your-customer) process. In his conversation with TechCabal, he stated, “I deposited $100 into Flip [which promised a 6% annual yield]. However, in October last year, I realised that I couldn’t access my money because I failed to complete the KYC successfully.” He initially contacted Flip on Twitter, and they provided him with some steps to follow. But, despite diligently following the instructions, months passed without him being able to access his funds. Eventually, Lamide emailed the founder,  Lanre Adenowo, who directed him to join the earlier-mentioned Telegram group. It was within this group that Lamide discovered other users facing similar issues and a variety of other problems with the app.

According to Lamide, the Telegram group currently has around 333 individuals, including users and some employees of Fluidcoins. The range of problems reported by group members varied, from the inability to access their savings to the inability to retrieve funds from expired virtual dollar cards. Lamide emphasised: “Aside from users expressing their complaints and asking unanswered questions about the status of their funds, the company rarely communicates any information on the channel, but they keep making posts on Twitter.”

A screenshot
of said Telegram channel shows over 300 members and some users complaining. Image source: Lamide*

Blockfinex, the company that acquired Flip’s parent company Fluidcoins last year, has confirmed that users are experiencing difficulties accessing their funds. Danny Oyekan, founder and CEO of Blockfinex, insists that only 20 out of the 34,000 users inherited from Flip may be facing these problems and that the money held up may be about $5,000. He explained, “The issues arise from technical and financial challenges that were unknown to us during the acquisition. To resolve them, we are currently migrating customers from Flip’s original wallet to another wallet.” Oyekan informed TechCabal that a migration form has been shared with users to facilitate the transition to Blockfinex’s new wallet.

TechCabal has confirmed that such a form was actually shared on Twitter. In the post, which was made on May 5, the company said it will migrate the stablecoins—$TUSD, $USDT, or $BUSD—from their Flip wallet to Blockfinex’s wallet within 14 days. However, that did not happen. Conversations with customers indicate that some individuals still do not have access to their funds despite having completed the migration form. One customer however told TechCabal that the form does not cater to people who had pending withdrawals from their accounts. “I requested a withdrawal of 50 USDT from my Flip to my local bank on May 11 and till now the transaction has been pending, even though it has been deducted from my Flip. Now my balance is just 0.22 USDT and there is no provision for that issue in the form. There is someone whose money has been pending since April too. We raised this matter on the Telegram channel but got no response.” 

Flip App
The screenshot shows pending a withdrawal on the Flip app. Image source: Flip app user

Oyekan acknowledged the communication gap on Telegram, stating, “We have primarily been engaging with users who reach out to us on Twitter, inadvertently neglecting those on Telegram.” He also explained that “The migration is taking so long because Flip’s wallets are indexed wallets so we have to go through them one by one to match them to each user and migrate them manually. Today, the previous management tried a bit to help us fix the issue. ” A source close to the matter revealed to TechCabal that the delay may be due to inadequate information transfer from Flip’s former operators. The source suggested that the situation might have been different if the former operators had been more helpful with the migration. 

Given the complexities of the acquisition of Fluidcoins, it is understandable that there might have been communication gaps between the previous owners of Flip and Blockfinex. However, Lanre who initially founded Fluidcoins, and spoke to TechCabal, confirmed ongoing communication with the Blockfinex team and presented emails as evidence. He stated, “I am unsure if a migration is taking place, but I have been and still am available to help with any issues they reach out to me about.”

Oyekan, on the other hand, told TechCabal that the migration is indeed taking place. “We are determined to quickly resolve the matter and eventually shut down the Flip app. We acquired Fluidcoins for the B2B aspect and not the B2C,” he said.

Get the best African tech newsletters in your inbox