Bitcoin Startup with All-Star Team Makes Bid to Become Trust
New York banking regulator Benjamin Lawsky provided details Wednesday about his plan to require the state's financial institutions to strengthen their cyberdefense systems.December 10
Rand Paul, the Kentucky senator and Republican presidential candidate, told supporters and Bitcoin enthusiasts that policymakers should foster the development of new payments technologies like they did with the Internet.April 21
The cost of complying with New York State's proposed BitLicense regulations would wipe out many smaller digital currency businesses. But there is a middle ground: placing those businesses under the supervision of a self-regulating incubator that would help them develop robust yet affordable compliance programs.April 13
Bitreserve, a payments startup that aims to give consumers the speed, transparency and cost advantages of Bitcoin without the currency fluctuations, hired a former Barclays executive as its president and chief operating officer, a newly created position.April 8
The Bitcoin exchange itBit has applied to become a trust company in New York State a move that would make it the first cryptocurrency firm to receive such a license in the U.S.
itBit Trust Company LLC sent articles of organization to New York's Department of Financial Services on Feb. 3, according to a public notice on the agency's website. A number of high-profile former regulators and politicians are listed as backers, including former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. head Sheila Bair, former New Jersey senator and member of the Senate Finance Committee William Bradley and former Financial Accounting Standards Board director Robert Herz. Their involvement with itBit, co-founded by chief executive Charles Cascarilla in 2012, had not previously been announced.
New York regulators have been become increasingly invested in the question of how Bitcoin companies should be regulated as the digital currency and related technologies gain traction in the U.S. DFS superintendent Benjamin Lawsky proposed a controversial set of requirements for digital currency firms in July 2014.
A trust charter could help itBit gain the confidence of future investors, according to Martin Mushkin, an attorney specializing in Bitcoin law.
"It's getting good publicity to show that it really wants to be upfront and aboveboard," said Mushkin. "The advantage of being regulated and carrying on business in compliance with regulation is that people will feel more comfortable with them than some outfit that tries to go around it."
itBit currently caters to institutional and retail investors in Singapore looking to buy and sell bitcoins. Reuters reports that the application is "part of itBit's plan to expand its business into different corners of financial services."
Cascarilla and Emil Woods, who together with Cascarilla co-founded the hedge fund Cedar Hill Capital Partners in 2004, are also listed as organizers on the application.