Anchorage Trust Company, a San Francisco-based chartered trust company, has announced its conversion to the first federally charted digital asset bank, Anchorage Digital Bank, after the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) conditional approval.
Anchorage co-founders Nathan McCauley and Diogo Mónica announced the news in a blog post on Thursday. According to the announcement, the OCC has provided conditional approval to Anchorage’s application for a national trust charter, which makes Anchorage Digital Bank National Association, the first federally chartered digital asset bank in history.
Nathan McCauley and Diogo Mónica wrote:
“This is a major milestone, not only for us as an organization, but also for the crypto industry and the wider financial world. Crypto deserves a bank, and we are immensely proud of being approved as the one to set the standard.”
Anchorage is a digital asset platform that strives to give institutions easy and efficient access to crypto custody, trading, financing, staking, and governance services. It is also a qualified custodian that helps SEC-registered investment advisers meet their obligations under federal law.
According to Anchorage, with the rise of institutional crypto adoption, they see a growing demand for innovative financial services that exceed the expectations of traditional finance. Anchorage Digital Bank will be the first platform to have the tech and the regulatory clarity that serious institutional participation in crypto demands.
Nathan McCauley and Diogo Mónica, describing the need for a federally charted crypto bank, said that the existed fintech firms had the technology to securely handle digital assets operation but lacked regulatory clarity as they operate by state-by-state regulation. The existing federally charted banks have a robust regulatory framework but lack the technology to operate in the space of crypto and blockchain. Anchorage Digital Bank will feature both these important requirements to provide “innovative financial products and services with the safety and soundness that institutional participants require.”
In a press release, the OCC also confirmed the conditional approval of the conversion of Anchorage Trust Company to Anchorage Digital Bank National Association. According to OCC, as a condition of approval, the company has entered “into an operating agreement which sets forth, among other things, capital and liquidity requirements and the OCC’s risk management expectations.”
OCC said that for granting this approval, it applied the same rigorous review and standards applied to all charter applications. The regulator, describing its willingness to accept new financial technologies, said:
“The Anchorage approval demonstrates that the national bank charters provided under the National Bank Act are broad and flexible enough to accommodate evolving approaches to financial services in the 21st century.”
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