The Wyoming Banking Council has just voted to approve Kraken, a San Francisco-based cryptocurrency firm, as a special-purpose depository institution (SPDI). In other words, it is the first cryptocurrency exchange in the country ready to become a bank, as CoinDesk writes.
“By becoming a bank, we have direct access to federal payment infrastructure and can more easily integrate banking and customer finance options,” David Kinitsky, director, told CoinDesk. General of Kraken and CEO of the newly-established Kraken Financial Atheist.
If its efforts pay off, Kraken Financial will no longer have to deal with a variety of different rules for regulating digital assets, depending on the state. In addition to several aspects, Kraken Financial will give Kraken the ability to operate in several jurisdictions, Kinitsky said.
As a state-authorized bank, Kraken now owns a regulatory port in other states, without having to deal with a state-by-state compliance plan.
SPDI banks in Wyoming, first established in November 2019, are still different from regular national banks. They never own full legal ownership of any digital assets, but they are legally allowed to own them. Then, following a possible bankruptcy, they must be returned to the customers.
Kraken has big plans now that he's been approved. “We expect to offer a number of new products as we strengthen,” Kinitsky told CoinDesk. “These will range from things like qualified custody for institutions, debit cards for digital assets and savings accounts to new types of asset classes,” he added.
This step comes in the context in which in July, the US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a decision that allows national banks to provide custody services to cryptocurrency startups. Karen Financial is now focusing on building its teams and is preparing to take full responsibility for customer service and operations.