Crypto firm Kraken gets US bank charter for digital assets

Crypto exchange Kraken announced that the State of Wyoming approved an application to form the world’s first Special Purpose Depository Institution (SPDI), tentatively called Kraken Financial.

Headquartered in Cheyenne, Wyoming, Kraken Financial is the first digital asset company in US history to receive a bank charter recognized under federal and state law, and will be the first regulated, US bank to provide comprehensive deposit-taking, custody and fiduciary services for digital assets.

From paying bills and receiving salaries in cryptocurrency to incorporating digital assets into investment and trading portfolios, Kraken Financial will enable Kraken clients in the US to bank with digital assets and national currencies. This new institution will be regulated in largely the same manner as other US banks.

During its first year of operations, the SPDI plans to give clients the ability to deposit USD and custody digital assets at a regulated state-chartered bank. These banking services will be integrated into the existing exchange services.

Other services anticipated in the first year of operations are: digital asset custody; demand/deposit accounts; and wire transfer and funding services. The firm is also developing policies and procedures to ensure that when it acts as a Qualified Custodian for investment professionals, under applicable federal and state law, it will do so in full compliance with all applicable laws and rules.

“We believe the SPDI lays the groundwork for this for the first time as a state-chartered bank, instead of many trust companies which provide custody, but not discretionary fiduciary services,” according to a blog post.

Read the full announcement

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