Apex Crypto wins coveted Bitlicenses in New York

abdelaziz Fathi

Apex Fintech Solutions, which went public earlier this year through a merger with a blank-check firm, announced that its digital assets unit was awarded a coveted license to deal in cryptocurrencies in New York.

Apex Crypto was granted a so-called BitLicense by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS), joining a handful of firms who the approval to operate in the state. It now legally operates as a money transmitter and digital currency exchange, according to a company statement.

To maintain a BitLicense license, a provider must fulfill various reporting requirements and comply with standards on anti-money laundering, cybersecurity, and consumer protection.

New York is the only state that requires firms dealing in the digital assets to obtain a license to operate. The Empire State has established strong state-based regulation, but the approach has been widely maligned by the crypto community for being one of the strictest laws governing this type of business.

The news follows other, similar stories of progress for Bitcoin companies in the US, though cryptocurrency regulation still happens largely on a state-by-state basis.

“Apex’s BitLicense is a culmination of our team’s hard work and commitment to partner with regulators and state entities as we seek to provide Apex Crypto clients, as well as our end users, the ability to invest in what they want, when they want, in a clear and transparent manner,” said Danny Rosenthal, CEO of Apex Crypto.

“We appreciate the trust and framework guidance of the NYDFS throughout this approval process. As we move forward into this exciting next chapter for Apex, we are hyper-focused on providing premier service as the trusted investing infrastructure partner of choice across all asset classes,” added Rachel Saunders, CEO of Apex Digital Assets.

Apex allows partners to include cryptos into their brokerage portfolio

Apex Fintech (formerly Apex Clearing) is a financial technology firm that offers clearing, digital custody services and fractional share trading, among others, to its clients. Their offering focuses on enhancing brokerage functions such as opening accounts and onboarding, moving money, deposits and withdrawals.

Apex also opens the door for its partners to include the crypto assets into their clients’ portfolios alongside traditional brokerage assets, which has been disjointed in the past. From a legal and regulatory standpoint, the platform offers compliant custody and trading services for clients in most US states.

The fintech company allows clients to open cryptocurrency accounts to buy and trade tokens. In their initial launch, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin were the first cryptocurrencies Apex supported, with plans to add more coins based on demand.

Apex, owned by financial technology firm Peak6, went public in February through a merger with Northern Star Investment Corp II in a deal that valued the combined entity at $5 billion.

It was the clearing house for no-commission stock app Robinhood until it launched its own clearing service. Apex was also reportedly bidding to provide PayPal with technology infrastructure to launch its stock-trading platform.

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