State Street Breaks Its Silence on Crypto, Will Continue to Wait and Watch


State Street, one of the largest custody banks in the world, recently clarified why it is yet to launch a service to store crypto assets.

On air was Jay Biancamano, the Managing Director of Digital Product Development at State Street, who went on record with The Block to discuss the firm’s plans for the future.

On being asked how interested State Street is in bitcoin, Jay said that the firm is more interested to see what blockchain and tokenization can do for digital assets as opposed to just bitcoin.

He added that they’re thinking about this space in a broader scope to ascertain whether the market will shift overnight. As of now, custody cryptocurrency does not seem to be specifically the focus for State Street but a piece of the whole picture.

Jay explicitly mentioned that certain tokens like utility tokens are completely out of scope but it is only a matter of time before the firm ventures into the crypto space given how some clients are already shifting to digital offerings of real estate, art etc.

The reason why the firm has not yet started dealing with cryptocurrency is that the company is intently led by its clients who are presently not investing in crypto for a number of reasons. Though there is a lot of talk around crypto out there, Jay feels that the regulatory landscape has not moved that quickly. Clients are skeptical and the quality has to improve before it generates institutional interest.

“The main focus for State Street remains in letting the clients focus on seamlessly being able to invest in any asset whether traditional or digital. When digital assets are in vogue and clients are moving in that direction, we want to be prepared to move in that direction as well.”

He added that the firm is looking at client suggestions, feedback, proof of concepts to evolve and see what it can do about it. He believes that the company is in a learning phase and wants to move correctly in a direction that the clients are comfortable with.

More interested in the products that can come out of blockchain, he sees a lot of opportunity in this space to innovate with digital assets in a client’s portfolio in the future.

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