Capital markets News

StanChart’s Zodia launches digital asset custody in Australia

standard chartered

Today Zodia Custody announced the launch of its institutional digital asset custody services in Australia. Additionally it unveiled its new SAF3 brand which expands Zodia’s service beyond basic custody and will roll out in 2024. Zodia Custody was founded in 2020 as a UK Standard Chartered subsidiary with Northern Trust as a minority partner. In April Japan’s SBI became a significant investor after leading the startup’s $36 million Series A funding.

“Today, an estimated 26% of Australians hold digital assets, totalling the equivalent of $21.6 billion currently held via cryptocurrency exchanges and custodial solutions,” said Julian Sawyer, CEO, Zodia Custody. “Our technology and risk management infrastructure housed within the SAF3 platform was built from the ground-up for institutions by institutions, such as regulated banks.”

Zodia Custody Australia recently partnered with the National Australia Bank (NAB) for a nine week proof of concept. The first official Australian client is asset manager DigitalX, where the CEO is an ex-NAB executive.

NAB’s Chief Innovation Officer, Howard Silby, said testing included “Zodia’s unique approach to a real-time air-gapped cold wallet capability and the new all-in-one digital assets platform experience; SAF3. The results were overwhelmingly positive.” Apart from custody, SAF3 supports trading via exchanges without exposure to exchange custody risks, as well as compliance and fraud intelligence. The latter is configurable by institutions.

Meanwhile, this news is the latest of several geographic moves. The company has licenses in the UK, Ireland and Luxembourg. It has a joint venture in Japan with SBI and set up shop in Singapore in September. In May Standard Chartered announced initial plans to launch a presence in Dubai.