BBVA Switzerland Launches Crypto Wallet and Investment Offerings for Retail Investors

BBVA Switzerland Launches Crypto Wallet and Investment Offerings for Retail Investors

Earlier this week, multinational banking giant Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) launched its latest digital investment account, featuring an integrated cryptocurrency wallet. The move to add a digital crypto wallet is an extension of the custody and trading services the bank began experimenting with earlier in June.

To access the so-called “New Gen” account service, individuals must be 18 years of age, and be residents in a country of the European Union, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, or Chile.

According to the press release, users must deposit a minimum of $10,000 in USD, Euros, or Swiss francs. After the completion of an online KYC form and video verification, users can use their BBVA crypto wallet to store, buy and sell Bitcoin and Ethereum, the two largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.

“With New Gen we want to reach a new type of investor, attracted by new sectors that have great potential to transform the future,” said Javier Rubio, Director of Client Solutions at BBVA Switzerland.

BBVA Bolsters Offerings with Bitcoin, and Ethereum, Alongside Catalogs of Investing Themes

Besides cryptocurrencies, BBVA’s New Gen account will offer access to catalogs of companies and funds organized into 11 different themes, including climate change, disruptive technologies, and autonomous vehicles, among others.

“The new account offers a multitude of ideas that every client can invest in what is of interest to them and in line with their principles, without obstacles or barriers, with one of the most competitive rates in Swiss banking and with all the guarantee and security of BBVA.”

Much earlier this year, the likes of Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, UBS, and other financial institutions began offering crypto-based derivative and futures products. However, virtually all of these services could only be accessed by accredited investors.

BBVA Switzerland certainly isn’t the first major bank to offer cryptocurrencies to its clients, but it’s the first bank to accept non-accredited investors.

Despite its limited region availability, the idea of financial institutions offering direct crypto exposure to retail investors may have major implications. The offerings are undoubtedly limited, but with competitive fees, promises of top-notch security banks could certainly siphon users from major exchanges in the near future.

It’s also important to note the recent regulatory crackdown of exchanges such as Binance — which may play a major role in financial institutions expanding their offerings to everyday investors.