Today Standard Chartered‘s SC Ventures announced a partnership with Hong Kong-listed BC Technology Group to launch a digital asset brokerage and exchange. BC is the parent to Hong Kong licensed digital asset platform OSL. The new platform will be based in the UK to target institutional and corporate clients in the UK and Europe, expecting to launch in Q4 2021, subject to regulatory approval.
The joint venture aims to combine OSL’s technology with Standard Chartered’s global network and brokerage experience. It plans to provide access to deep liquidity pools in Bitcoin, Ethereum and other digital assets.
“We have a strong conviction that digital assets are here to stay and will be adopted by the institutional market as a highly relevant asset class,” said Alex Manson of SC Ventures said. “We are constructing the building blocks for a safe and reliable investment infrastructure.”
In late December, Standard Chartered announced Zodia, a digital asset custody venture with Northern Trust, also based in London. As of January this year, SC Ventures was the sole shareholder of $5 million Zodia Holdings shares. However, since then, there has been a capital injection of an additional $15 million.
Various institutions around the world are placing bets on digital assets. One of the most active is SBI which recently bought B2C2, a UK-based institutional cryptocurrency market maker, and plans to create a digital asset bank. Goldman Sachs recently re-opened its cryptocurrency trading desk, and Citi is eying the sector as well.