Japan isn’t just another Bitcoin-friendly nation, it’s a country that has taken Bitcoin to its heart. From Bitcoin ATMs to the general chat on the streets, it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that Japan has emerged as a true Bitcoin hub. One area where Japan was falling short is when it came to mainstream crypto trading, but that’s all about to change. After several delays, Japanese internet mega-power SBI Holdings has finally launched VCTRADE – the public version of its dedicated cryptocurrency exchange.
VCTRADE Has Arrived
The delays in the launch of VCTRADE have been pretty well documented, largely as SBI were not willing to rush the platform to release. Facing increased regulatory demands – mostly linked to security measures – SBI took a step back in order to make sure every detail was covered prior to public launch. Given that it’s now live we can understand more about its qualifying measures. “Account opening is available for individuals from 20 to 70 years old residing in Japan, [while] applications for setting up accounts from corporate customers are not currently accepted,” said SBI in a launch statement.
Bitcoin is Big in Japan
As Japan’s national interest in Bitcoin and blockchain technology has skyrocketed, so have the calls for a major financial firm such as SBI to open its doors to crypto trading. SBI is now considered to be a blockchain ever-present, with it evening endorsing Ripple. Ripple’s XRP coin was actually the central focus of VCTRADE during the private trial – prior to Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) being added.
Safe and Secure
Japan’s security measures when it comes to both crypto trading and crypto use have become legendary. Taking these matters seriously, passing the fit and proper tests to operate in the country is no easy feat. Many projects and exchanges have fallen foul of the FSA, so SBI was taking no chances with the launch of VCTRADE. Having now appeared to meet these strict prerequisites, it’s able to serve the domestic market.
Competition is on the Horizon
Given the launch of VCTRADE – with FSA backing – SBI now has an edge over the competition in what is a heated marketplace. However, it can’t celebrate its launch for too long, as some big-time competition is on the way, with Yahoo! set to launch its own exchange in Japan next year and US-based Coinbase looking to target the Japanese market.