Capital markets News

DZ Bank partners Börse Stuttgart for crypto solution for German cooperative banks

DZ Bank

DZ Bank provides services to 737 community and cooperative banks in Germany. Last month, Bloomberg reported that the bank plans to start piloting a retail crypto service for its community bank partners. Börse Stuttgart confirmed to Ledger Insights that it is the crypto partner for both cryptocurrency trading and custody. DZ Bank acknowledged the relationship. German news outlet BTC Echo first reported the news.

The German stock exchange was ahead of the game on crypto, launching a retail-focused cryptocurrency exchange in 2019. Axel Springer and SBI Digital Asset Holdings are investors in Börse Stuttgart Digital.

DZ Bank launched its own institutional digital asset custody solution late last year. It involves a collaboration with Ripple-owned technology firm Metaco. 

Institutional v retail digital asset custody

A spokesperson for DZ Bank clarified the difference between the relationships to Ledger Insights. Regarding the offering based on Metaco Harmonize, they said “the current scope is the settlement, management and custody of crypto securities as regulated in the German electronic securities act. In a second stage we plan to broaden the scope to selected crypto assets as regulated by MiCAR. Our offering focuses on institutional clients only. The solution that DZ BANK is building with Börse Stuttgart focuses on retail clients only.”

While the retail offering is a major deal, the institutional side is also a significant undertaking. DZ is the third largest German custodian behind BNP Paribas and State Street. The group owns Germany’s third largest asset manager, Union Investment (AUM €424bn), one of the most prolific investors in tokenized securities. Union recently launched a blockchain and crypto-related fund

The Union Investment executive responsible for these initiatives, Christoph Hock, announced last year that he was stepping away from his role as head of multi-asset trading. Yesterday he said he started a new role as Union’s Head of Tokenization and Digital Assets (portfolio management).

Börse Stuttgart’s institutional offering

Meanwhile, Börse Stuttgart also has an institutional crypto offering that was launched in 2020. Yesterday the stock exchange said it partnered with Profidata, a wealth management software provider. Profidata counts the Bayerische Landesbank (BayernLB) amongst its 40 or so institutional clients, although that doesn’t imply Bayern is planning a crypto offering.

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