Pre-Brexit, Koine Wins E-Money License From UK’s FCA, Now Seeking Luxembourg, UAE, US Permissions


Digital asset custodian Koine Money Ltd. has secured an electronic money license from U.K. regulators, while it prepares for the eventualities of a future Brexit by seeking permissions abroad.

On Thursday, the U.K’s Financial Conduct Authority granted Koine an e-money license – known as an EMI license – allowing Koine to issue its own digital cash and provide other payment services to institutional clients.

The EMI license, however, does not certify or sanction Koine’s digital asset custodian services, the company said in a statement. Those services “are currently outside the UK regulatory perimeter,” Koine said.

For the moment Koine’s EMI license applies across European markets while the UK remains in the E.U. That would change if and when Brexit comes to Britain; the current leave date is set for January 31, 2020.

A Koine spokeswoman told CoinDesk that Brexit would not impact their business approach.

“We believe in the importance of the UK as a focal point for our line of business, to the extent that we have applied to additional permissions in the country for securities. However, we retain our international vision and, in applying for licenses in Luxembourg, a major financial center in its own right, this provides optionality in the event of an adverse Brexit scenario.”

She further noted Koine is also considering pursuing licensing in Abu Dhabi and across the U.S.

In a company statement, Koine CEO and Chairman Hugh L. Hughes said that the EMI licensing clears the way for more digital asset developments:

“With our EMI authorisation now issued by the FCA, we are rapidly moving to implement the market infrastructure necessary to support institutional participation in the digital assets marketplace.”

British pounds image via Shutterstock