Canada's Biggest Bank Reportedly Looking to Launch a Cryptocurrency Exchange

The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), the country’s biggest bank with over $900 billion in total assets, is reportedly looking to launch its own cryptocurrency exchange.

According to The Logic, four public patent applications the RBC filed reveal it’s looking to create a cryptocurrency trading platform, and could also let customers buy crypto in-store and online. Moreover, the patents show the bank is looking to let customers open bank accounts containing crypto.

The bank is said to already be using blockchain technology, with its CEO Dave McKay saying earlier this year it was looking to tokenize a variety of assets to register them on a blockchain. Some of its other uses for decentralized ledger technology include verifying client identities.

Offering cryptocurrencies to clients via its own crypto exchange would make it a pioneer in the country. One of the patents reads:

To individual users, managing cryptographic keys and transacting with different cryptographic assets can be a challenge. In some situations, cryptographic asset transactions may take time to be confirmed, and/or may not be compatible or supported by merchant systems or point-of-sale devices.

The patents were revealed at a time n which local exchanges are starting to get a bad reputation. Vancouver-based Einstein filed for bankruptcy owing over $12 million to customers earlier this year, while QuadrigaCX infamously got locked out of $190 million worth of client funds after its CEO passed away and no one was able to access its cold wallets.

The RBC’s patents suggest it can avoid these issues, while offering users easy access to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, ether, and XRP. They also suggest clients may use Visa and Mastercard to by cryptocurrency, and then transfer it to an RBC account. Marc Kaufman, a Washington, D.C.-based partner at Rimon Law, was quoted as saying:

Just like a mutual fund makes stocks more accessible, this could make tokenized assets more accessible.

Other banks throughout the world have applied for these kinds of patents, as The Logic notes. One of them, JP Morgan, ended up launching its own cryptocurrency JPM Coin.

Featured image via Unsplash.