Standard Chartered is planning to launch an institutional crypto brokerage and exchange for clients in the United Kingdom and Europe. It intends to give users access to Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other digital assets' deep liquidity pools.
The parent firm of the Hong Kong-regulated crypto exchange OSL, BC Group, has teamed with Standard Chartered's innovation and enterprises section SC Ventures.
The move comes as other financial institutions enter the crypto market, which has grown to $1.7 trillion in market capitalization despite a severe selloff in May that pushed the market cap below $2 trillion.
Morgan Stanley became the first major US financial firm to offer access to Bitcoin funds after Goldman Sachs created a cryptocurrency trading desk. While StanChart ramps up its crypto trading, HSBC CEO Noel Quinn declared last week that his firm has no intentions to launch a crypto desk or offer clients cryptocurrencies.
SC Ventures partnered with Northern Trust, a Chicago-based asset management organisation, to create Zodia Custody, a crypto custody service, in December. Following regulatory permission, the London-based operations will provide custody services for bitcoin and ethereum, followed by XRP, litecoin, and bitcoin cash.