Commonwealth Bank revealed on the 3rd of November that they will now be offering crypto services to all customers through their CommBank app. This is the first bank in Australia to offer such services, and more importantly it comes from one of the “big four” banks in the country.
Australia has been making big moves in the cryptosphere as of late as the country continues to become more crypto-friendly. From the senate committee proposing that Australia become a crypto hub to the first crypto-adjacent ETF being listed on the ASX, Australia is quickly adapting to the growing asset class.
What crypto services will Commonwealth Bank Offer?
CBA will allow customers to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrency through its CommBank app. It will be offering these services using the crypto exchange, Gemini, as its partner.
This news comes after the bank found that a large number of its customer base were interested in gaining access to cryptocurrencies.
We believe we can play an important role in crypto to address what’s clearly a growing customer need and provide capability, security and confidence in a crypto trading platform.
– Matt Comyn, CBA CEO
In continuing CBAs dive into cryptocurrencies, the bank has also partnered with blockchain analytics firm, Chainanalysis, which also recently opened their first Australian office in the country in Canberra earlier last week.
Crypto user, Stephan Livera, a supposed former employee of the bank claimed that the CBA has been toying with the technology for some years.
Anyway for people who don’t know, CBA is the largest bank in Australia, known for being very technologically forward thinking, but had been shitcoining and blockchaining for a while (at least while I was there).
Very interesting move to enable it right in the app
— Stephan Livera (@stephanlivera) November 2, 2021
While cryptocurrency users already have access to strong and secure cryptocurrency exchanges in the country like CoinSpot, BTC markets and Independent Reserve, many believe that this acceptance by a major financial institution will only continue to improve cryptocurrency adoption throughout the country.
However, not all were optimistic about the news. Some were disappointed that the bank opted to go with an international partner in Gemini rather than one of the countries home-grown exchanges.
CEO of Independent Reserve, Adrian Przelozny, expressed that it was a shame that the CBA didn’t “engage with local players at all.” However, he soon followed this up by suggesting that this has prompted them to reach out to other Australian banks, as he believes CBA is only the first but not the last bank in Aus to offer crypto services.
What this means for Cryptocurrency as a whole
This move only strengthens the notion that crypto is in a supercycle and has gone mainstream. Crypto acceptance and services from a big four bank promotes the idea that cryptocurrency is no longer a niche investment but truly an emerging asset class.
Although many hardcore crypto users still believe decentralisation is the way forward, CBA offering crypto services directly through their app now allows 6.5 million Australians easy access to crypto.
CEO of BTC Markets, Caroline Bowler, described the move as “exciting” and “inevitable”.
“Australia has suddenly put the lead foot down. We have been touted as playing catch up all this while, but now we’re moving into a leadership position globally with our largest bank.”
– Caroline Bowler, BTC Markets CEO
Whether or not CBA customers will flock to cryptocurrencies through the app or continue to use more battle-tested and established cryptocurrency exchanges in the country is still up for debate. However, one thing is clear, Australia is fast becoming a cryptocurrency-friendly country. With exciting news coming out of the country on a weekly basis, Australia is truly positioning itself to become a leader in the space.