Northern Trust, Standard Chartered Crypto JV Gets FCA Nod
Posted by Colin Lambert. Last updated: July 29, 2021
Zodia Custody, a joint venture between Standard Chartered’s SC Ventures and Northern Trust, has successfully registered with the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The registration means that Zodia Custody is now providing commercial services to clients as a crypto asset business.
The venture offers services to clients across the globe and enables institutions to invest safely and securely in crypto assets. The firm’s backers say it satisfies institutional investors’ need for a crypto asset custodian that understands traditional custody and meets investors’ high standards and expectations, whilst maintaining the flexibility required to adapt to the ever-changing crypto asset market.
The venture is one of nine crypto asset businesses granted FCA registration under the UK’s Money Laundering Regulations and has commenced commercial operations following a period of testing.
The registration with the FCA means the business is now supervised under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017, which brought crypto assets into scope in January 2020 and is mandatory for all firms providing crypto asset services in the UK.
Zodia Custody is initially providing custody services for the two most traded cryptoassets, Bitcoin and Ethereum, with plans to expand to more crypto assets based on client demand it says.
“Zodia Custody marks an exciting development for the institutional custody market. We deliver bank-grade crypto asset custody to a standard expected of world-leading global custodians, having been developed with long-established best practices and regulatory compliance in mind,” says Maxime De Guillebon, CEO of Zodia Custody.” By leveraging the best practices of Standard Chartered and Northern Trust, we give institutional clients the comfort that their and their investors’ assets are kept in a manner that is aligned with the more traditional asset markets. This underpins our mission to increase the accessibility of the crypto asset market for a wider institutional audience.”
Alex Manson of SC Ventures, adds, “We believe crypto assets as an asset class is here to stay. We set up Zodia Custody with the clear goal of serving institutional investors who want to invest in cryptoassets in a sustainable, safe and responsible way. Our aspiration is to lift standards, grow the ecosystem and help a nascent industry mature, becoming more acceptable to institutional investors and ultimately society at large.”
Meanwhile, Pete Cherecwich, president, corporate & institutional services at Northern Trust says, “Since the announcement of the launch of Zodia Custody in December 2020, we have seen significant market interest in these new capabilities. The FCA registration, alongside the successful operational testing with pilot clients, marks a significant milestone. We are pleased that Zodia’s robust capabilities now make it possible to support the growing number of institutional asset owners, family offices and asset managers around the world investing in this emerging asset class.”