Japan’s SBI Holdings owns a 90% stake in UK-based B2C2 after buying a minority stake in July this year. Since the deal came into effect, SBI’s daily volume has increased by 10 times on its digital exchange while B2C2 OTC volumes appear to have quadrupled. Both the platforms are now looking into expanding crypto adoption in the options and derivatives market, particularly for the Asian demographics.
SBI’s Partnership with B2C2 Advantageous for Asia
Phillip Gillespie, CEO of B2C2 told to Nikkei Asia on SBI:
“SBI has the balance sheet, the licensing, brand recognition, and the trust, which has been lacking in crypto. That’s going to be our major push, going after institutional people who are looking into crypto but are worried about counterparty, custody, and liquidity risk.”
The partnership could lead Japan as Asia’s financial hub, as regional rivals including Singapore, Hong Kong among others compete to accommodate investor’s interest in accessing cryptocurrencies.
For Instance, in mid-December, Singapore bank DBS launched a crypto exchange platform after securing a digital banking license from the Singapore monetary authority. The DBS exchange will be the first in Singapore to be backed by a traditional bank. Meanwhile, last week, Hong Kong granted its first crypto trading license to OSL Digital Securities Ltd.
Japan Realizes the Potential of the Crypto Market
The deal between SBI and B2C2 was approved in only less than 6 months. This indicates that Japan’s lawmakers realize the potential of the cryptocurrency market.
Ryo Suzuki, executive director of SBI’s FX and rates division added on the expansion of crypto services in Japan:
“SBI Group is the biggest internet financial group in Japan so we have the customer base. The cryptocurrency market is not mature in Japan yet, but B2C2’s expertise can provide such a service.”
The partnership between SBI and B2C2 comes in a good time as the current crypto market is shattering record with Bitcoin’s price rising to an all-time high of $24,000 this week.