SC Ventures to Pilot Crypto Trading for Institutional Investors in London by 2021by Fintechnews Switzerland December 11, 2020
SC Ventures, the investment arm of Standard Chartered Bank, and Northern Trust, a provider of asset servicing, have entered into an agreement to launch Zodia Custody, an institutional-grade custody solution for cryptocurrencies.
Zodia is designed to enable institutions to invest in the emerging cryptocurrency assets that are transforming how financial markets operate, including transaction and settlement activities. Under the agreement, which is subject to registration with the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), all applicable regulatory filings and customary closing conditions, Zodia is expected to begin operations in London in 2021.
Zodia combines the traditional custody principles and expertise of a bank with the agility of a fintech company to provide an infrastructure that meets the high standards and expectations of institutional investors through a platform that adapts to the changing needs of clients and the market.
At launch, pending regulatory approval, Zodia will provide custody services for the most-traded cryptocurrency assets, Bitcoin, Ethereum, followed by XRP, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash, which represent the majority of client demand and activity. They account for approximately 80% of the total assets (which is equivalent to USD395 billion) traded on the top cryptocurrency exchanges.
Maxime De Guillebon, Chief Executive Officer of Zodia, said:
“Zodia was established to address the need for a cryptocurrency custodian that truly understands custody. We combine the risk management, compliance, governance and security approach of a regulated financial institution with the cutting-edge innovation of crypto asset and key management technologies. By doing so, we enable operational efficiency and speed of transaction without compromising on security or reliability.”
Alex Manson of SC Ventures, said:
“The launch of Zodia demonstrates our commitment to rewiring the DNA in banking. Drawing on Standard Chartered’s heritage of providing custody services to institutional clients for 160 years, Zodia’s mission is to be a ‘force for good’ by lifting industry standards for digital assets in a sustainable, safe and responsible way.”
Zodia further establishes Standard Chartered and Northern Trust as leaders in the development of digital-asset infrastructure. Alongside its partnerships with blockchain service providers, Standard Chartered has invested in core technology provider Metaco and is collaborating with the Bank of Thailand and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority to explore distributed ledger interoperability for cross-border fund transfers.
In 2020, Northern Trust and BondEvalue partnered to complete the first trade of a fractionalised blockchain-based bond, working in cooperation with the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
Zodia Custody is in the process of registering with the FCA under UK Money Laundering Regulations and will apply standards that are equivalent to the custody of traditional securities.
Featured image credit: Standard Chartered