Kraken Launches its Bank

Kraken, a cryptocurrency exchange, is planning to launch a bank in the United States despite the challenging regulatory environment faced by the industry. Kraken’s chief legal officer, Marco Santori, confirmed this during an interview on The Scoop podcast.

The move comes as banking institutions increasingly turn their backs on blockchain-related companies. In addition, Kraken has come under scrutiny from the Securities and Exchange Commission in recent months due to increased regulatory action against the crypto industry following the collapse of FTX in November.

In addition, Kraken was charged with the unlawful provision and liquidation of securities and for its staking services accessible to U.S. consumers. Kraken agreed to pay thirty million dollars in disgorgement, civil penalties, and prejudgement interest to counter the allegations and stop its blockchain staking service. Kraken’s plan to launch a bank is aimed at helping to promote innovation and maintain banking services within the sector.

Kraken recently announced that it would no longer offer certain services with Signature Bank, which include non-corporate clients’ ability to deposit or withdraw U.S. dollars from the bank due to changes made by Signature. While addressing rumors of a government-backed effort to dismantle the crypto industry in the U.S., Santori dismissed such claims.

However, he admitted that the previous year’s events had led some regulators to reach a consensus that the crypto industry cannot operate without oversight in the future. Santori clarified that there is no shadowy group conspiring against Crypto but a group of regulators who share the same perspective regarding the importance of Crypto’s current state and the need for regulation moving forward.

Bitcoin Cards to be Launched in Europe and the U.K

Bybit, the world’s third most utilized crypto exchange, has revealed that it will launch a debit card backed by MasterCard’s network and issued by Moorwand. Per the press release today, users can easily switch from the world of cryptocurrencies to fiat money and withdraw cash or make purchases from ATMs by using this card.

By utilizing the Bybit Card, clients can avoid the need for intermediaries and other service providers when initiating direct payments for goods and services utilizing their crypto assets. The service will be available to clients in qualified countries in the U.K. and Europe who have complied with the AML and KYC requirements.

The Bybit Card will boost a large group of cryptos, such as ETH, USDC, XRP, USDT, and BTC, with the potential to add more cryptocurrencies. Furthermore, when a payment is initiated, the customer’s balance will be instantly transformed into either British Pounds or Euros, based on their jurisdiction.

Distribution of Cards

Bybit has announced that it will release a physical debit card in April, granting users access to global spending and ATM withdrawals at merchants. In addition, the spending restrictions will be aggregated across the various currencies held in the user’s Bybit wallet. Senior Vice President of Fintech and Crypto at MasterCard Europe, Christian Rau, said that:

MasterCard enables the safe and secure movement of digital value, whether traditional or cryptocurrency. The company is excited to continue innovating in payments to make digital assets more accessible.

It is worth noting that Bybit’s move to launch a crypto debit card comes after VISA’s recent announcement of its Crypto cards and Bitcoin for customers in the U.K. and forty nations in the Asia Pacific region in February.

While VISA has shown a growing interest in the cryptocurrency industry, there were rumors that the payment giant was hesitant to pursue further involvement due to concerns about its volatility. However, VISA has since confirmed its dedication to Crypto and denied reports that it intends to halt its efforts in the cryptocurrency space due to unpredictable market conditions.