Standard Chartered’s crypto brokerage Zodia Custody plans to offer its services to institutional investors in Ireland.
Zodia Custody is an exchange and brokerage for cryptocurrencies and digital assets that was established late last year by the British bank’s SC Ventures arm and wealth management firm Northern Trust.
It targets institutional investors for managing investments in digital and crypto assets. Since it was founded, it has operated with a number of pilot clients. Both Standard Chartered and Northern Trust have invested heavily in blockchain services in recent years.
The company is planning an initial launch in the UK and last month secured regulatory approval from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority under the authority’s new crypto register.
It plans to set up operations in Ireland ahead of a deeper push into the EU market and is seeking approvals from the Central Bank.
As part of its strategy to expand into Europe, Zodia will have functions based in Dublin including traders.
A spokesman for Standard Chartered said Zodia is seeking to establish a “cryptoasset brokerage and exchange serving clients in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and a presence in Ireland is part of its EU strategy”.
“It will secure all necessary approvals from the Central Bank of Ireland before its launch,” he said.
Standard Chartered has an existing presence in Ireland through its aviation financing business, with offices in Dublin and Limerick.
The Irish plans for Zodia are at an early stage but it will eventually join a comprehensive roster of cryptocurrency and digital asset companies that have based themselves in Dublin, as well as traditional banking players entering the field.
US bank BNY Mellon recently established a crypto custodian service in Dublin while the capital also plays host to We.Trade, a blockchain development firm backed by several of the world’s biggest banks including HSBC and Santander. PayPal, another big-name newcomer to the crypto space, is assembling teams to support its functions in Dublin and Dundalk.
Coinbase has established a significant base in Dublin to service the EU market, while rivals Gemini and Kraken are setting up operations in the city.