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Banking powerhouse Citibank (C) has selected Swiss cryptocurrency custody firm Metaco to develop the bank’s digital assets safekeeping capabilities.
Citi, which holds about $27 trillion assets under custody, intends to fully integrate Metaco’s “Harmonize” crypto custody platform, the companies said on Wednesday.
The announcement concerns Citi’s Securities Services team, a representative for the bank pointed out via email, meaning the focus for now will be on things like tokenized securities: representations of stocks and bonds moved around and settled using blockchain tech.
Like Goldman Sachs (GS) and JPMorgan (JPM), Citi offers trading in bitcoin (BTC) futures, and in November of last year the bank revealed plans to hire 100 staffers to beef up a digital assets division for institutional clients.
“We are witnessing the increasing digitization of traditional investment assets along with new native digital assets. We are innovating and developing new capabilities to support digital asset classes that are becoming increasingly relevant to our clients,” said Okan Pekin, Global Head of Securities Services at Citi in a statement.
Metaco has provided crypto custody plumbing for a number of banks, including Spain’s BBVA (BME) and GazpromBank (Switzerland). The Swiss technology firm is also working with the digital asset division of IBM, a favorite infrastructure provider for most of the world’s banks.