Standard Chartered, a major banking company, recently disclosed that it intends to establish a cryptocurrency exchange and brokerage platform in the U.K. and Europe.
According to Alex Manson, Head of SC Ventures, the firm’s innovation arm, the plans for a crypto exchange and brokerage will be targeted at institutional clients.
“We have a strong conviction that digital assets are here to stay and will be adopted by the institutional market as a highly relevant asset class. We are constructing the building blocks for a safe and reliable investment infrastructure,” Manson stated.
The plans were set in motion by Standard Chartered through a partnership with BC Technology Group, a Hong Kong based firm that currently operates OSL, a digital assets platform licensed by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), and is the first platform of its kind to receive the license.
Standard Chartered's crypto platform will connect institutional traders with counterparties trading Bitcoin, Ethereum, as well as a range of other digital assets on the market.
The platform is set for launch in the fourth quarter of this year, and will be led by BC Group Chief Information Officer Usman Ahmad at the helm as its CEO, with Nick Philpott of SC Ventures working as COO.
As global adoption and institutional demand for access and exposure to crypto continues despite negative media attention and tightening regulations from countries such as China, Standard Chartered’s move toward the establishment of a crypto exchange and brokerage platform comes at a critical time.
Prior to the launch of this new crypto exchange and brokerage platform, SC Ventures has also engaged in a venture with Northern Trust to launch Zodia Custody, an institutional-grade custody solution for digital assets. SC Ventures has also made investments in blockchain technology in a partnership with Metaco, an orchestration platform for businesses.
Standard Chartered’s innovation arm has also collaborated with the Bank of Thailand and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority in a project concerning research on distributed ledger interoperability to enable cross-border fund transfers.
As a mainstream institution, this plan from Standard Chartered marks a renewed interest in crypto from major banks. Other major banks who have also launched their crypto strategies include Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, and the Development Bank of Singapore.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.