The state of Wyoming has licensed the Kraken exchange to establish a crypto-bank. Called Kraken Financial, it is the first crypto company in US history to receive a banking license recognized by federal law.
According to a statement released yesterday, Kraken has obtained approval from the Wyoming Board of Banks for its „Special Purpose Depository“ (SPDI) application.
As a result, Kraken becomes the first regulated US bank to provide comprehensive deposit, custody and trust services for digital assets
“Whether paying bills and receiving salaries in cryptocurrency or integrating them into investment and trading portfolios, Kraken Financial will enable Kraken clients in the United States to perform banking transactions. seamlessly between digital assets and national currencies, ”the statement said.
However, this SPDI license comes with some restrictions. Kraken Financial is not permitted to use its clients‘ deposits to issue loans to others. Kraken’s crypto-bank will have to permanently keep all of its clients ‚ funds in fiat currency.
David Kinitsky , appointed as CEO of Kraken Financial, said:
“We are delighted to be working in such a state that conforms to our philosophy and our values. Wyoming is a rare and shining example of how thoughtful regulation can spur innovation for FinTech companies. “
The gap between banks and exchanges is closing
First, Kraken will implement an online and mobile banking model. In its first year of operation, Kraken Financial plans to give its clients the option to deposit US dollars and hold digital assets.
Due to its true position as a bridge between traditional finance and cryptocurrencies, Kraken Financial will offer a range of services combining the two universes:
Custody of digital assets (with addition of staking in the future)
Bank transfer and financing services
A debit card allowing you to spend your cryptocurrencies
And everything a standard bank can offer
In the future, Kraken hopes to be able to offer additional retail, wealth management and treasury services.
The arrival of Kraken Financial in the United States certainly proves how close the exchanges are to banks (credit card, loans, savings …), and it is now a reality. With Kraken creating a full-fledged banking service, the platform is now entering a new era.
For now, Kraken Financial will provide its services to residents of all states in the country except New York State . However, Kraken will not be content with the United States alone, and intends to expand its business globally.
Ultimately, are cryptocurrency exchanges likely to replace banks ? With the border becoming thinner and thinner between the two, it is certain that these platforms take an important place every day in our daily life, and now well beyond the borders of the crypto-sphere.
This Kraken feat should definitely be followed by others. Wyoming would be quite likely to grant more SPDI licenses to other platforms, including Coinbase and Gemini.