SC Ventures, the innovation and venture capital arm of Standard Chartered Bank, will launch a crypto custody service for institutional investors in London next year.

According to a press statement on December 9, the British bank is cooperating with the American wealth and asset management company Northern Trust on the project. They will jointly launch a new business called Zodia Custody.

The transaction still needs to be registered with the approval of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and other regulatory agencies. The statement said that at the time of launch, Zodia will provide custody services for Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).

Standard Chartered Bank pointed out that institutional investors currently only account for 9% of crypto asset investments. It stated that the launch of the custodial service was the result of increasing interest in virtual currencies by institutions.

Pete Cherecwich, President of Northern Trust Corporation and Institutional Services, said: “Backed by the expertise and experience of global banks, the introduction of digital custody is a breakthrough in the development and support of the institutional cryptocurrency market.”

He added: “As interest in emerging and innovative financial instruments continues to grow, Zodia’s powerful features will make it possible for institutional asset owners, family offices and asset managers to invest in a range of cryptocurrencies.”

In the past, the lack of custodial services for companies might be considered a stumbling block to institutional Bitcoin adoption. Now, large financial institutions and banks, including Fidelity Investments, JPMorgan, and other companies, are entering this field to provide various encryption services.

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Northern Trust was established in 1889 and has offices in the United States, Canada, Europe, the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region. As of September 30, Northern Trust’s assets under custody/management were USD 13.1 trillion and assets under management were USD 1.3 trillion.

Standard Chartered Bank has operations outside of London and has branches in 145 countries. The bank’s chief executive, Bill Winters, said this week that the adoption of digital currencies is “absolutely inevitable.”

What do you think of Standard Chartered’s new custody service? Let us know in the comments section below.

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