BNP Paribas says “yes” to digital assets, but not to cryptocurrencies

Apparently this is the rumor of the week: BNP Paribas will start custody of cryptocurrencies. However, the banking group recently clarified things: it will offer digital asset custody services, but not cryptocurrencies as such. What difference does it make?

BNP launches digital asset custody

A press release from BNP Paribas clarified things this week about future asset custody services. The banking group has actually signed a partnership with METACO and Fireblocks. The latter are considered benchmarks in the cryptocurrency sector, and have helped many large companies integrate these new technologies.

However, BNP Paribas’ launch into the broader blockchain asset custody sector is very cautious. As stated in the press release, the bank will offer to hold on behalf of its customers tokenized digital assets, but not cryptocurrencies as such :

The first step for BNP Paribas is to use the Fireblocks solution in the ongoing experiment related to settlement and the custody of regulated security tokens.»

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The bank rules cryptocurrencies at the moment

This means that the bank wants to start the custody of “traditional” securities with a tokenized version that can be used on the blockchain. The keyword of this initiative is of course “controlled”. BNP Paribas wants to start offering its services when it is considered that the regulatory framework is strong enoughwhich is currently not the case.

A difference explained by Wayne Hughes, head of digital assets for BNP Paribas Securities Services, in the press release, while remembering that the bank does not stop there:

These partnerships represent a new step for us, allowing us to build a multi-asset, multi-vendor platform that […] offer full connection between traditional and digital assets.»

So we can see that this initiative is a first step for the bank. Although it marks the distances very clearly with cryptocurrencies, the use of industry leaders such as Fireblocks and METACO not a little. So let’s keep an eye on the bank’s next initiatives in this area.

👉 On the same topic – BNP Paribas collaborates with EDF ENR to tokenize a bond to finance a sustainable energy project

published in editions Larousse

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Source: BNP Paribas, press release

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