In the recent years, numerous cryptocurrency companies have emerged, hundreds of startups have launched Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and thousands of coins and tokens have seen the light of day. A lot of these companies are virtual currency exchanges, centralized and decentralized. Coinbase is one of them. The San Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange company has been one of the leaders and at the forefront of the crypto revolution and frenzy that has been spreading around the world. According to the company’s website, it currently has 20+ million users and $150 billion have already been traded since its foundation, in June 2012.
The platform makes it easy for individuals, especially beginners, to purchase, trade and sell digital currencies. In December 2017, when Bitcoin was gaining momentum, popularity, and almost reached $20,000, the platform saw its number of customers skyrocket, with thousands of new sign-ups every day.
On Thursday, the company announced that it was currently working on getting registered with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). By doing so, Coinbase will be able to have a new type of cryptocurrency asset on its platform: securities. Securities are financial instruments that have a monetary value or certificates. Common securities are bonds and stocks. The crypto firm has declared acquiring multiple licenses, including a broker-dealer license. Complete and official approval is still pending, however. Asiff Hirji, the president and COO of Coinbase declared in a blog post on Medium “If approved, these licenses will set Coinbase on a path to offer future services that include crypto securities trading, margin and over-the-counter (OTC) trading, and new market data products.”
The new Coinbase activities will be monitored by the SEC and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.
In addition to this huge news, Coinbase has announced that it is opening a new office in Japan in an attempt to become one of the leading actors of the cryptocurrency market in the nation. Digital currencies and the Blockchain technology are extremely popular in Japan, and joining the trend represents a great business opportunity for the American giant. Many exchanges are looking to launch in Japan, but it currently takes months as the Japanese FSA is imposing extremely strict compliance rules to newcomers.
With these two important business moves, Coinbase confirms its strong desire to lead the market and to stay on top of the competition worldwide. Will other big actors, such as Gemini or Binance, launch securities trading? Will others expand their operations to other nations in the future?
TLDR: Coinbase, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, has announced that it acquired licenses to be able to list cryptocurrency type securities. In addition, it is opening its first office location in Japan.