In our last , we committed to making major strides in order to serve our European customers. Today we’re excited to share two updates — the first is that Coinbase has been granted an e-money license by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The second is that we are the first crypto-exchange to support the UK’s Faster Payments Scheme.
Coinbase is happy to announce that we have received an e-money license from the FCA. The license will allow Coinbase to issue e-money and provide payment services in the UK. The license requires Coinbase’s e-money operations to meet the strict rules enforced by the FCA and the Payment Services Directive. For our customers, this will ultimately help us deliver a better experience through new partnerships and an easier to use product.
We are committed to making sure customer funds are always secure and this update means that our e-money operations have safeguards and operational standards at par with other regulated financial institutions. An example of this is segregation of client funds, where all customer fiat balances will be separated from Coinbase’s funds and kept in separate bank accounts.
In another first, we are announcing today that Coinbase will add support for the UK’s Faster Payments Scheme (FPS). By replacing SEPA for UK customers, Faster Payments will offer a familiar payment experience and is supported by all major UK banks. UK customers will benefit from faster, safer and seamless bank transfers. We will start with a pilot, giving a small number of institutional users access to Faster Payments. In the coming weeks, we will begin rolling out to all UK customers, making the Coinbase experience increasingly easier.
Since we began offering our services to European users in 2014, we have seen the grow significantly. The EU grew twice as fast as any of our other markets in 2017, and the UK continues to be our largest market here. In order to meet this increasing demand we plan to grow our London team 8x by the end of this year (come join the team, see open roles ).
As European interest in grows, we remain dedicated to being the most secure exchange and see these announcements as important steps forward in our mission to creating an open financial system for the world.
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