Swiss cryptocurrency bank SEBA Bank has received an approval-in-principle (AIP) from Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), as the crypto-native bank seeks to grow its footprint across Asia.
In a statement shared with The Block on Wednesday, SEBA said it has obtained the AIP for its license application that will allow it to deal in securities, including crypto-related offerings such as over-the-counter derivatives and structured products.
Under the license, SEBA will also be permitted to provide advisory services on securities and virtual assets, as well as offer asset management for discretionary accounts holding both traditional securities and digital assets.
🇭🇰 Switzerland-based crypto bank, SEBA, secures approval-in-principle in Hong Kong, paving the way for a broader range of crypto-related services in the region.
2: 🌐 SEBA's approval from Hong Kong's securities regulator signifies its growing presence in Asia. The bank is set… pic.twitter.com/w0eDq4Ye21— The Token Dispatch (@tokendispatch_) August 30, 2023
Targeting Growth in Hong Kong, Singapore
According to Amy Yu, SEBA’s chief executive officer for Asia Pacific, the crypto bank sees enormous potential in the Hong Kong and Singapore markets, with strong demand from crypto companies for full-service banking.
Currently, SEBA’s Hong Kong subsidiary works closely with its parent company in Zug to offer services. However, the plan is to gradually build up more autonomy in SEBA’s Asia businesses to better serve local markets.
For SEBA, Hong Kong and Singapore are top priorities in Asia, according to Yu. The bank expanded into Hong Kong last November, opening a new office just a month after local authorities released a series of crypto-friendly policies.
In December, Hong Kong’s legislature also passed amendments introducing a comprehensive licensing regime for crypto platforms seeking to offer retail trading.
Bullish on Crypto Demand in Asia
The moves to grow its presence across Asia indicate SEBA’s bullish outlook on demand for crypto services in regional markets.
With clear crypto licensing frameworks now in place in financial hubs like Hong Kong and Singapore, the bank is looking to capitalize on surging interest in digital assets.
By providing a full suite of regulated banking services specialized for crypto, SEBA is positioning itself as a go-to provider for both crypto firms and institutional investors in Asia.
The SFC’s approval-in-principle represents a crucial first step for SEBA’s Asia growth strategy. Subject to official approval by year’s end, the crypto bank will soon have the green light to aggressively target Asia’s burgeoning crypto economy.