DBS bank gets approval to offer crypto services in Singapore

DBS Bank’s brokerage arm, DBS Vickers (DBSV), has received in-principle approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to offer digital payment token services as to companies

Singapore’s DBS Bank brokerage affiliate announced it has received compliance in-principle from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to begin offering crypto services to asset managers and companies.

DBS Vickers (DBSV) received the go-ahead from the country’s financial regulator under the country’s Payment Services Act.

In 2019, Singapore passed its payment act, requiring all-digital payment service providers to get their license in order to operate. When the license is granted, DBSV said it will be able to directly support managers and companies via its DBS Digital Exchange (DDex), where they will gain access to its digital payment token services.

According to the press release, DDEx will operate “round-the-clock.” This means that DDEx’s members will be able to trade on the exchange at any time, enhancing their ability to seize opportunities and manage risks arising from changes in cryptocurrency spot prices. The exchange first operated only during Asian trading hours to allow for processes and protocols to be finetuned.

DBSV said it is one of the first few financial institutions to obtain such approval, adding that it intends to work through the necessary follow-ups with a view towards meeting MAS’ requirements for a license.

It follows on from DBS having issued an SGD$15 million (US$11.3 million) digital bond in its first security token offering via DDex, which was completed by way of a private placement in May.

Eng-Kwok Seat Moey, Group Head of Capital Markets at DBS, said the bank is “pleased to have made steady progress on our digital asset ecosystem in the six months since we launched the DDEx last year, and this shows in our trading and custody activity.”

He admitted there is a huge interest among asset managers and corporates for access to digital payment token services, and with DBSV receiving in-principle approval under the PS Act, the company is ready to meet this growing demand.

Further plans, according to the announcement, include accelerating growth for DDEx by doubling its investor base by the end of the year.

Southeast Asia’s largest lender recently announced that its digital exchange did as much as SGD$180 million (US$133 million) of trading in the second quarter of 2021 and that it held about SGD$130 to SGD$140 million of digital assets under custody.

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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