One of the most innovative banks has joined a trade group that represents the nascent blockchain and digital currency industry.
San Antonio-based USAA is now a member of the Chamber of Digital Commerce, the Washington-based group announced Monday. It joined alongside Microsoft, the blockchain services company Bloq and the smart contracts platform Symbiont. Since the chamber's inception in 2014, most of its members have been bitcoin and blockchain startups as well as some software companies and investment firms.
"Market leading companies continue to enter the blockchain ecosystem at an unprecedented pace," Perianne Boring, the group's founder and president, said in a news release. "They quickly realize that education and advocacy efforts are mission-critical to the success of this industry's future."
The chamber is an advocacy group working to help build the regulatory framework for the bitcoin community through the promotion and use of digital assets. It has expanded its interests to include blockchain-focused activity as the ecosystem has developed.
USAA has shown an active interest in bitcoin, the digital currency often overlooked by financial institutions more attracted to blockchain technology on which it operates. The bank could not be reached for this story.
In November it launched a pilot program with the bitcoin exchange and wallet company Coinbase that lets customers view and monitor their bitcoin wallet balances when they sign into their USAA accounts. It has not integrated a way for customers to exchange or transact bitcoin, however. That was after it invested in a $75 million funding round in Coinbase earlier that year.