Leading cryptocurrency business Blockchain.com has successfully obtained a major payment institution license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), signaling a significant step forward in its expansion efforts within the Asian market.
The license, granted on August 1, positions Blockchain.com to offer regulated digital payment token services to its global institutional and accredited investor clients.
This achievement comes less than a year after the company received preliminary approval from MAS, highlighting the efficiency of the application process.
Blockchain.com is known for its foundational role in Bitcoin infrastructure and services. The recent license award reinforces the company’s commitment to serving the growing cryptocurrency sector, particularly in Singapore.
Founded in Britain in 2011, it currently has more than 90 million wallets created, over 40 million verified users, and has facilitated over US$1 trillion in crypto transactions.
The company’s journey has also been linked to notable figures in the crypto space, with Binance’s founder and CEO, Zhao Changpeng, previously serving as the Head of Development at Blockchain.com in 2013.
According to Rakesh Madamanchi, Head of Institutional Compliance at Blockchain.com, Singapore plays a pivotal role in the company’s global operations, accounting for over 90% of its institutional and accredited investor business.
The license, he notes, acts as a “game changer” by providing a level of assurance to both the company and its partners.
One key advantage of the license is its potential to facilitate partnerships with traditional banking institutions. The cryptocurrency industry often faces challenges in this area due to concerns related to money laundering and terrorist financing risks.
With the license in place, Blockchain.com expects to navigate these hurdles more effectively.
In addition to its core offerings, Blockchain.com acquired Singapore-based trading firm Altonomy in 2022, further cementing its presence in the region.
The firm’s strategic focus remains on consolidating its position in Singapore and expanding globally.
In the first half of 2023, significant developments unfolded in Singapore’s digital landscape:
- Crypto.com launched the Global Innovation Lab in Singapore, aiming to advance blockchain, Web3, and AI technologies. This was announced at the Point Zero Forum, highlighting Crypto.com’s commitment to cryptocurrency legitimacy.
- Ripple obtained preliminary approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for a Major Payments Institution License. This enables Ripple to offer digital payment token services in Singapore, following regulatory guidelines.
- A notable decision by the Singaporean High Court recognized crypto assets as legal property. This verdict resulted from the ByBit Fintech Limited vs. Ho Kai Xin case and has implications for the digital asset sector in Singapore and beyond.