Binance is cementing the foundation for the first bank entirely owned by cryptocurrency investors.
The leading crypto exchange says it’s seeking approval from regulators in Malta, according to Bloomberg. The bank would be subject to the financial regulations of the European Union.
“The promoters say the project, based on blockchain systems, will seek to turn Founders Bank into the first decentralized and community-owned bank in the world — provided it gets the necessary permits.
Binance’s investment marks its first step toward an offering that Founders Bank will conduct through the blockchain-based equity fundraising platform Neufund, issuing its own ‘legally-binding equity tokens.’”
According to Binance, a token sale for the project “would be conducted under German regulations in collaboration with one of Europe’s major stock exchanges later this year.” Binance will have a five percent stake in the bank alongside other investors in the cryptocurrency space. The current pre-money valuation of the venture is $155 million.
The news follows a series of pro-cryptocurrency laws in Malta designed to boost blockchain-based businesses in the country.
In a statement, Binance says the legislation is creating a “fertile environment for blockchain companies and cleared the uncertainties surrounding the market for decentralized assets.”
Binance decided to move to Malta after facing pressure from Japanese regulators in March. The company is planning to launch a decentralized exchange in the island nation later this year.