DBS Group of Singapore aims to quadruple the number of participants on its new cryptocurrency trading platform to 1,000 by the end of December, and to grow by 20-30% annually for the next three years as digital tokens acquire acceptance.
DBS top executives said in an interview that the DBS Digital Exchange, which opened as a members-only market in December, is witnessing strong demand from corporate investors, certified individuals, and investment institutions that handle the fortunes of wealthy families.
DBS’s move into crypto comes after CEO Piyush Gupta led the bank to invest billions of dollars in IT infrastructure upgrades over the last eight years as it adopted cloud computing and digitised its services.
In a crypto sector where investor trust is still low, DBS Digital Exchange bills itself as the world’s only bank-backed full service digital bourse, offering cryptocurrency trading, asset tokenization, and digital custody services.
The rising popularity of cryptocurrencies has created a challenge for traditional banks as they try to balance their customers’ desire for digital coins with regulatory concerns about their risks.
Singapore’s central bank implemented a new regulatory framework for cryptocurrency businesses in January 2020.
Under the new regime, DBS’ brokerage arm has received preliminary approval, allowing it to directly assist asset managers and companies in trading digital payment tokens on the bourse. The Singapore Exchange owns a 10% stake in the stock exchange.
Binance, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, announced last week that it will limit its services in Singapore, days after the central bank urged it to stop offering payment services.
DBS Digital Exchange allows users to trade bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, and XRP for dollars, Singapore dollars, Hong Kong dollars, and yen.
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