Crypto regulation is a gift, says Gemini director

Coinrivet spoke to Stephanie Ramezan at DAS London regarding the exchange's effort to become a leader in institutional markets in the UK

Gemini UK’s institutional offering is proving itself as a leader in the space due to its “conservative approach” towards regulation and a strong background in legal compliance, according to Stephanie Ramezan, director of business development for Gemini Europe.

Coin Rivet spoke to Ramezan at the Digital Asset Summit in London about Gemini’s role in attracting institutional clients to the crypto space and its strong regulatory status.

When asked about Gemini’s impact in the UK, Ramezan said that the exchange works “with a variety of institutions”, which include “banks, market makers, hedge funds, family offices, asset managers and corporates that want to take payments in crypto”.

Ramezan said that its offerings were “to a very broad range of institutional clients” and that Gemini sees itself “as the premium offering” for institutional investors in the space – largely due to Gemini’s FCA regulated status as a custodian and an exchange.

Gemini’s regulatory status is largely thanks to a compliance team that “understands what is needed to achieve the kind of regulation that we are seeking and continue to seek” and a “conservative approach” towards the tricky ecosystem. Ramezan said “we see regulation as a gift” and that “we prefer to ask for permission rather than forgiveness”.

The exchange has also taken a “slow and steady” approach towards expansion efforts and that conversations with the regulators are done in advance.

Stephanie Ramezan, Director of Business Development for Gemini Europe

Ramezan said that Gemini sees itself “as a peer” to traditional finance institutions, which is a differentiator to competitors like Coinbase and Grayscale.

“As much as we are a tech company, we still believe in the old school power of relationships,” said Ramezan, who then expanded on the need for a “human experience” and personal touches when using the OTC desk.

Through Gemini UK, institutional investors have access to approximately 50 assets – all of which are custodied by Gemini, which is also regulated as an exchange. To start with, Ramezan said that a majority of investors purchase Bitcoin and Ethereum, and then expand into other assets over time.

Finally, when asked whether Gemini would remain as market leader when wider regulation occurs, Ramezan said that as “more regulation comes into the space, the market will consolidate” and that some exchanges and custodians “will struggle to “compete with Gemini and some of our peers”.

She concluded by saying Gemini was being “very, very cautious in terms of what we can and will offer”  because of the current regulation.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.

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