Bank Frick, a small, family-run Lichtenstein-based bank, has become one of the first banks in the world that lets its clients directly invest in cryptocurrencies. The bank further revealed it will protect its clients’ crypto assets by offering cold storage solutions.
According to an announcement, Bank Frick now allows its clients to buy and sell five different cryptocurrencies: bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ripple, ethereum, and litecoin. The bank revealed it’s targeting institutional and high-value private clients, preferably those who can invest with US dollars, Euros, or Swiss francs.
Hubert Büchel, the bank’s chief client officer, stated
“Our services are in high demand from companies across Europe. The companies know that we reliably support them in implementing their cryptocurrency and blockchain business models in accordance with existing European regulations.”
When clients purchase cryptocurrencies and leave them under the bank’s custody, these will be stored offline, away from potential hackers – in cold storage. This is considered to be the safest way of protecting cryptocurrencies. Bank Frick further revealed that it will store backup copies of its clients’ private keys in a “geo-redundant and secure manner.”
The financial institution is fully regulated under both Lichtenstein and European Union laws. As such, it will do what it can to track the sources of capital its clients invest in cryptocurrencies, so as to comply with anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your customer (KYC) rules.
The move, according to Büchel, is bringing cryptocurrency to a whole new crowd. He explained:
"Financial intermediaries, such as asset managers and fiduciaries, can make use of our new offering to successfully differentiate themselves in the market and add value for their clients.”
Back in September 2017, Bank Frick was the first bank in its region to launch a cryptocurrency basket tracking certificate based on bitcoin and ethereum. By the end of January, the basket’s value surged by 238 percent.
The family-run bank, however, isn’t the first financial institution to offer crypto-based products. Dutch multinational Rabobank Group has revealed a similar service, although it isn’t clear the organization will go through with it.