Deutsche Börse-owned Crypto Finance gets German licenses, parent readies exchange launch

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Crypto Finance’s German subsidiary has received four licenses from the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). The Crypto Finance licenses come as its parent company Deutsche Börse prepares to launch a digital exchange.

Crypto Finance (Deutschland) is a provider of institutional-grade digital asset investment products, custody and trading. It is already regulated by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority, or FINMA. The German licenses will permit it to engage in regulated digital asset trading, settlement and custody services for institutions in Germany, according to an announcement.

Deutsche Börse acquired a majority stake in Switzerland-based Crypto Finance Group in 2021. Crypto Finance already offers products on the SIX exchange in Switzerland, where it launched the first Swiss crypto asset investment fund.

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Deutsche Börse announced plans in November to launch a cryptocurrency exchange target at institutional users. The new exchange will reportedly be called DBDX and is expected to launch this year. Crypto Finance Group CCEO Stijn Vander Straeten said of the BaFin approvals:

“This demonstrates our commitment to transparency and security but also positions us as a trusted entity in the market, contributing to the development of a reliable ecosystem for crypto assets.”

Crypto Finance is thus well prepared to play a role in that new exchange’s ecosystem. The digital asset securities registry D7, founded by Deutsche Börse subsidiary Clearstream, is also likely to be a key component for the new exchange.

By receiving BaFin licensing, Crypto Finance also has positioned itself inside the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) regulatory framework, portions of which will begin to come into force in 2024.

Deutsche Börse is also the owner of the Frankfurt Exchange, which operates the Deutsche Börse Xetra digital exchange.

BaFin rejected a crypto custody license application from Binance in June 2023, shortly after it approved Deutsche Bank for the same function. It approved the custody application of Boerse Stuttgart Digital blocknox in March. Boerse Stuttgart is a Deutsche Börse competitor. In November, it approved United States-based BitGo for crypto custody as well.

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