Avanti becomes the second crypto bank in the United States

In short

  • Avanti obtained a banking charter in Wyoming.
  • Kraken received a state banking charter in September.
  • In 2019, Wyoming passed new blockchain laws to attract digital asset companies.

Avanti received a banking charter from the Wyoming State Banking Board, a month after the Kraken exchange became the first crypto company receive a bank charter in Wyoming or the United States for that matter.

Avanti Financial Group, founded by former Morgan Stanley chief executive Caitlin Long, asked for a bank charter become a special purpose depository facility this summer.

The charter allows it to provide specific banking services, including custody of digital assets, and it plans to start opening business accounts next year.

“We will provide products and services that do not exist in the market today,” Long said in a press release. “Currently the only type of US financial institution that can provide final and simultaneous settlement of transactions between digital assets and the US dollar – as it is the only type currently approved to handle both within the same legal entity – is a Wyoming Special Purpose Depository Institution like Avanti.

One product he is considering in particular is his own tokenized dollar, Avit, which he plans to issue on the Bitcoin Liquid sidechain as well as Ethereum.

Long has been working for this moment for quite some time. In early 2019, the Wyoming Legislature passed a list of blockchain-friendly bills designed to make the western state a safe haven for crypto asset companies. As a member of the Wyoming Blockchain Task Force, Long played a major role in developing and lobbying for legislation.

Avanti nominally competes with Kraken Financial, which received its charter in September, with Long’s endorsement. Both banks plan to start operating in early 2021.


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