Coinfloor Becomes First Exchange To Get Gibraltar License

Kevin O'Brien

The oldest Bitcoin exchange in the United Kingdom has become the first one to secure a license to operate in Gibraltar.

According to the Financial Times, Coinfloor is set to become formally regulated as part of the jurisdiction’s new blockchain-specific rules for fintech companies.

The British Overseas Territory introduced their blockchain framework at the start of the year in an endeavor to attract more crypto-related companies.

Focusing On Quality Over Quantity

Coinfloor Chief Executive Obi Nwosu said the firm had to show the ability to conform to “nine principals” in order to secure a license.

As part of the process, Coinfloor was required to prove it maintains adequate custody, cybersecurity, anti-money laundering, and know-your-customer procedures.

Nwosu told the Financial Times the company was impressed about the thoughtfulness and consideration behind the legislation. He said it was clear regulators “are focusing in on quality over quantity.”

At the moment Coinfloor has three team members in Gibraltar.

When asked about recent company layoffs in the midst of a bear market, Nwosu explained how personnel changes are “a natural part of the market cycle, maintaining that Coinfloor was restructuring “just to focus on our core,” and did not have an exact number of jobs that would be cut.

Hedging Against Brexit?

The decision by Gibraltar to lay out blockchain and crypto-specific rules emulates a growing number of other jurisdictions, such as Malta, who are trying to attract attention.

Crypto-friendly legislation has also been passed in other tax-havens such as Liechtenstein and Bermuda. 

Some think however, that Gibraltar could be at a disadvantage when it comes to attracting talent due to Brexit uncertainty, as it is far from clear how it will be involved in the process.

The  Gibraltar Chronicle nonetheless reported on October 15th how an agreement for an “orderly withdrawal from the European Union” was allegedly almost ready.

On the same day, the Spanish Foreign Minister told reporters how he did not think “Gibraltar is a problem,” according to the Chronicle.