Report: Coinbase Seeking Federal Banking License

coinbase banking license

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal citing sources “familiar with the matter,” major cryptocurrency exchange and broker Coinbase Inc. and another cryptocurrency firm Ivy Koin, have been in talks with US Regulators about potentially receiving federal banking licenses in order to increase their product offering.

The Wall Street Journal’s sources say that Coinbase met with officials from the US Office of the Comptroller of Currency earlier this year to discuss the firm’s business plans and an application for a national banking charter that supersedes state-level financial regulations. Such a license would allow Coinbase to expand the products and services the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange has to offer, and removes the need for a federal banking partner.

A spokesperson for Coinbase declined Wall Street Journal’s request for comment on the matter, but added that Coinbase is “committed to working closely with state and federal regulators to ensure we are properly licensed for the products and services we offer.”

Coinbase seeking a federal banking license is part of an aggressive multi-level strategy to expand its business and lure institutional investors. 

Earlier in April, the Wall Street Journal also reported that Coinbase was investigating registering as a licensed brokerage firm with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Since then, Coinbase has announced support for ERC20 tokens, launched Coinbase Ventures aimed at funding crypto startups, acquired and Cipher Browser, debuted the Coinbase Index Fund, released Coinbase Custody, and announced a full suite of institutional products such as Coinbase Prime.