German Online Bank N26 to Launch Crypto Services This Year

Popular German online bank N26 is changing its strategy from solely global expansion to offering crypto services.

The company’s co-founder and CEO, Maximilian Tayenthal, made this known during an interview with the Financial Times (FT), saying that N26 regretted its initial expansion strategy that made it miss out on the surging crypto space.

According to Tayenthal, N26 should have focused more on offering crypto services rather than chasing a U.S. listing over the years.

“Should we have built trading and crypto instead of launching in the US? In hindsight, it might have been a smart idea,” told the publication..

Established in 2013 and valued at $9 billion following a 900 million raise, N26 is a Neobank, headquartered in Berlin, Germany, with the sole mission of expanding globally. The bank operates across 25 countries, with over seven million customers worldwide – which will now be given the opportunity to invest in cryptocurrencies.

Notably, N26 European competitor, Revolut, which started offering crypto services a few years ago, is valued more at a whopping $33 billion. The plan for N26 is to start offering crypto trading as well as brokerage services this year, apparently with an eye at replicating Revolut’s success.

Banks Now Thinking Crypto

Over the years, banks have been skeptical about crypto, even going as far as publicly criticizing the emerging industry. However, growing demand for the asset class among investors means these financial institutions must now look for ways to offer digital asset services to their clients.

Last year, American investor Vikram Pandit predicted the future of cryptocurrency, saying that large banks and traditional financial institutions will start thinking about crypto in one to three years, but it is already happening.

A few months back, Australia’s Commonwealth Bank (CBA) announced that it would become the first banking institution in the country to offer crypto services due to the increasingly growing demand for digital assets from customers.

In a similar development, the German savings bank committee dubbed “Sparkassen” announced plans to launch crypto wallet services this year.

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