Coinbase has given the British something to discuss aside from Brexit – that’s the addition of GBP withdrawals and deposits. Starting from August 1st, Coinbase will offer same-day deposits and withdrawals in GBP, giving the Brits immediate access to the crypto markets in their native currency. Coinbase users that held GBP were previously required to exchange this into EUR or USD before being able to deposit on the crypto exchange. Coinbase is notorious for updates like this, recently it changed its merchant algorithm so it no longer converts crypto payments into fiat, causing some online retailers to switch to BitPay.
Great News for the Brits
This is the news that Brits have been waiting for – finally a top exchange allowing them to use their native currency. The process to trade crypto with GBP used to be quite convoluted, with multiple fiat exchanges involved in the process. This need to exchange into other fiats often created extra headaches for investors, as they had to time their deposits and withdrawals even more carefully due to the fluctuations in fiat currency pairings. However, this wasn’t always a bad thing, as a well-timed trade between GBP and EUR could result in a nice profit.
Coinbase Continues to Grow
Coinbase is starting its march through Europe with the recent acquisition of an e-money license. This license ensures that investors funds are kept separately from the companies capital, meaning that if it stops operating, the fiat it holds on your behalf won’t get absorbed by it. While this is a good thing, it is still a far cry from a full banking license, which would guarantee investors’ funds up to a certain amount and subsequently are protected by the regulator. In addition to this, the e-money license does not state how secure Coinbase’s crypto wallet is either. Being honest, this is more of a minor issue, as any good crypto investor knows that you should keep your crypto in a cold wallet – ideally a hardware wallet such as the ones we’ve previously reviewed.
Staying Put for Now
While other exchanges are starting to move away from the US and Japan towards Malta, Coinbase seems fairly content with its home in sunny San Francisco. It is also in possession of a prestigious BitLicence, meaning it can operate within New York. It is only one of 10 companies to have such a license, most recently joining the list is BitPay. Malta provides blockchain companies with a new set of regulations that it recently passed into law, making it an ideal home for a crypto exchange – or any other crypto company for that matter.
It is always great to see new features being added to crypto exchanges, and even nicer to see them expanding operations. Coinbase is one of the most popular crypto exchanges around the globe, so its expansion into the UK and Europe wasn’t ever far away. Britain has been described as a “hotbed for crypto” and with Brexit fast approaching, cross-border payments with minimal transaction fees is looking like a pretty good deal. To top it off, Coinbase’s adverts are now back on social media, so expect the company to become much more prominent in the weeks and months to come.