BBVA Spain’s Second Largest Bank Launches Bitcoin Trading and Custody in Switzerland

BBVA, the second-largest bank in Spain, has announced the launch of its bitcoin trading and custody service through its Swiss subsidiary. Starting with bitcoin, BBVA plans to expand its services for other cryptocurrencies.

BBVA Introduces Bitcoin Trading and Custody Services

BBVA announced on Wednesday that it has “begun rolling out trials of what will be the first commercial service for digital asset trading and retention.”

BBVA (Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria) is Spain’s second-largest bank after Banco Santander. The group was founded in 1857 and has a total of 727 billion euros at the end of September. It has 7,565 branches and nearly 80 million customers in over 30 countries.

The bank explained that the new service will be offered through its Swiss subsidiary, BBVA Switzerland, which is “dedicated to international private banking services.” Customers will be able to “manage bitcoin transactions and get deposits in this cryptocurrency,” the bank described, adding:

Starting in 2021, BBVA will offer its clients a digital asset trading and holding service, with all the guarantees of any other banking service, with a transparent system that is very simple to operate.

“Digital assets have huge potential to transform the way value and knowledge are exchanged through blockchain technology,” said Alicia Pertusa, Head of Client Solutions Strategy at BBVA. “Financial institutions, in conjunction with supervisors, can play a relevant role in integrating digital assets into existing markets and infrastructures.”

The bank also highlighted that its crypto initiative “comes at a time when several countries are taking important steps towards a new regulation on how these digital asset markets can operate.”

BBVA stated that it will not offer advisory services for cryptocurrencies. He further explained that the crypto service will initially be offered in Switzerland “due to the fact that it is the most advanced European country for digital asset regulation and adoption, and has a wide range of companies in blockchain technology, which very useful to get these services started. “The bank also explained:

Initially, BBVA only manages transactions and bitcoin accounts, as it is the most widely accepted cryptocurrency, but plans to expand its offering to include other digital assets.

What do you think of BBVA launching bitcoin services? Let us know in the comments section below.

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