France Leading New Wave of Crypto Approvals With Bank Registration

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One of France’s oldest banking institutions has been given permission to offer crypto services by the country’s financial regulator.

SG Forge, the digital asset division of 150-year-old Société Générale, currently France’s third-largest bank, has been registered by l’Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF). 

SG Forge digital asset registration

The registration enables SG Forge to offer three services related to digital assets, such as providing custody services. But while customers can now also buy and sell cryptocurrencies for legal tender, as well as exchange them for other digital assets, SG Forge has yet to apply to operate as a trading platform.

After launching in 2018 as one of 60 internal startups established by Société Générale, SG Forge has become the financial institution’s leading department in digital assets. The company has collaborated independently with both ConsenSys and Tezos in experimenting with the creation of a central bank digital currency for France.

France crypto gateway to Europe

The approval of one of its oldest financial institutions is just the latest among companies that France has registered recently as digital asset service providers (DASP). Earlier this year, Binance became the first major cryptocurrency exchange to receive approval from French financial regulators to operate as a DASP. It also marked the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange’s first approval in Europe.

Last month, Singapore-based crypto platform Crypto.com also managed to register as a DASP in France, after receiving similar approvals from authorities in Italy and the United Kingdom. In fact, the company feels so confident about its placement in France that it decided to establish its regional headquarters in Paris. Crypto.com said it plans on investing some €150 million towards the endeavor, adding that it would draw on local talent to support its business development and compliance efforts.

Meanwhile, rival cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase recently hired Daniel Seifert, a senior executive from German fintech Solarisbank AG, to lead its expansion into European markets. While the San Francisco-based company has achieved registration in Italy and the Netherlands, it has its sights set on Spain and France next.

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