Santander Private Banking International diversifies into crypto trading for high net worth clients

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Santander Private Banking International, a division of Banco Santander, is now offering its wealthy clients the opportunity to trade and invest in prominent cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether, marking a significant shift in the bank’s approach to digital asset management.

Santander Private Banking International, an arm of Banco Santander, is now offering its high-net-worth clients the opportunity to trade and invest in major cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH). This move, detailed in an internal announcement obtained by CoinDesk, represents a significant shift in the bank’s approach to digital assets.

Santander, a bank with a rich history spanning over 160 years and serving 166 million customers, will not stop at offering just BTC and ETH. Over the coming months, it plans to extend its cryptocurrency offerings, adhering to stringent screening criteria to ensure quality and security.

This development is particularly noteworthy given the cautious stance of most large banks towards cryptocurrencies. Traditionally, big financial institutions have shied away from open-access blockchains and their associated digital currencies, preferring to explore safer avenues like tokenization. Santander’s decision to embrace these digital assets marks a departure from the norm.

The service, according to Santander, will be available only upon client request and operated using relationship managers. The bank assures a regulated custody model, wherein private cryptographic keys are stored securely, addressing critical security concerns in the digital asset space.

John Whelan, the head of crypto and digital assets at Santander, emphasizes the progressive nature of Swiss regulation concerning digital assets, noting its clarity and comprehensive regulatory environment.

Whelan suggests that as the trend of holding crypto as an alternative asset class grows, clients are increasingly looking to rely on established financial institutions for asset management.

 

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Edmund Shing, PhD

Global Chief Investment Officer
BNP Paribas Wealth Management

Edmund has over 29 years of experience in financial markets in a wide variety of positions, ranging from proprietary trading to portfolio manager in a number of financial institutions in London and Paris.  He previously held the role of Global Head of Equity and Derivative Strategy at BNP Paribas in London from 2015 to 2020, and has been Chief Investment Officer at BNP Paribas Wealth Management since November 2020.

Edmund is responsible for piloting our investment strategy and will continues to rollout out recommendations and themes with actionable advice that brings our expertise to our clients and support to our client-facing teams.  In this time of change, his expertise in following and anticipating markets is a true value added for both our customers and those at Wealth Management who serve them.

Edmund has a PhD in Cognitive and Computing Science from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, and has done advanced studies in Knowledge-Based Systems and in Experimental Psychology.  He is an EFFAS-certified financial analyst. He has also authored the book “The Idle Investor” published by Harriman House in 2015, proposing 3 simple investment strategies that take only a few minutes to execute per month.

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