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American and Japanese financial institutions invest in crypto exchanges

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Japan-based financial subsidiary SBI Financial Services and US-based financial services company American Express are the latest institutions in the financial industry to invest in the cryptocurrency market by acquiring and partnering with exchange sites. SBI Financial Services acquired British crypto liquidity startup company B2C2 on December 16, 2020 whereas the venture arm of American Express, American Express Ventures invested in institutional trading platform FalcomX on the same day.

SBI Financial Services announced its acquisition of shares of B2C2 Limited in a press release posted on the company’s website on December 16, 2020. According to the press release, the Japanese financial services company acquired 90% of B2C2’s stakes on December 15, 2020, after the approval procedure has been completed. The procedure’s completion officially made the London-based startup company a subsidiary of SBI Financial Services.

SBI recently purchased a $30 million minority stake in B2C2 in July 2020. The Japanese company also laid down the basic agreement of the B2C2 acquisition in a press release published on July 1. The acquisition was finalized on December 15.

SBI intends to use B2C2’s liquidity services by connecting it with another subsidiary of SBI Holdings, SBI VC Trade, which is a crypto lending platform. ‘The Group will utilize its global network, liquidity and cutting-edge risk management methods to target customers such as individuals, corporations and institutional investors,’ announced SBI Group in the same press release.

SBI Financial Services is a subsidiary of SBI Holdings which has shown interest and support for the cryptocurrency market. SBI Holdings has partnered with Ripple and formed SBI Ripple Asia based in Tokyo. Acquiring B2C2 is one of the SBI Group’s latest crypto development projects. ‘We hope that we will be able to further develop innovative services and products globally.’

Meanwhile, US-based financial services corporation American Express has invested in institutional investor trading platform FalconX through its venture arm American Express Venture.

Trading platform FalconX announced American Express Venture has invested a combined $17 million worth of pooled investor funds into the company in a press release published on December 16, 2020. The investment came from AmEx Venture clients such as Coinbase Ventures, Fenbushi Capital and Flybridge Capital Partners among others.

FalconX allows institutional clients to trade, clear and credit cryptocurrencies at large capacities through a single platform.

This investment will further drive adoption by major investors due to the current economic climate. ‘We’re seeing growing interest from traditional asset managers who are adding cryptocurrencies as an inflationary hedge, catalyzed by recent macro-economic policies,’ said FalconX CEO and co-founder Raghu Yarlagadda.

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