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Bitcoin in your bank account?

The buzz around corporate treasurers holding crypto assets has intensified recently, as first movers such as Tesla have invested large amounts of cash into bitcoin to hold alongside traditional fiat currencies. Now financial technology firm FIS has announced a solution that enables banks to offer their customers the ability to buy, sell, and hold bitcoin via their bank accounts.

"As demand for bitcoin as a store of value continues to grow, FIS is focused on enabling our core banking clients to respond to growing market demand and better serve their customers," said Rob Lee, head of Global Core Banking and Channels at FIS. "Unlocking these capabilities for financial institutions of all sizes levels the playing field for banking with bitcoin and can drive further innovation."

Bringing crypto into the banking system

Currently, corporates and consumers must establish new accounts, often with unregulated entities, and go outside of their traditional banking relationships to acquire bitcoin. 

The solution from FIS taps into the functionality of its Digital One Mobile solution to allow banks to provide bitcoin services via a seamless digital experience, which should enable them to drive fee income and better attract and retain customers.

Once a financial institution enables this solution, their customers will be able to view and manage bitcoin holdings alongside their traditional accounts in a single view.

Partnering with NYDIG

The secure custodial and trading platform for managing the bitcoin transactions will be provided by bitcoin-focused financial services and technology provider NYDIG under a recently signed agreement with FIS. In late 2020, FIS and NYDIG partnered with Quontic Bank to enable the New York-based digital bank to be the first FDIC-insured financial institution in the US to go live with a Bitcoin Rewards debit card.

In addition to the commercial agreement, FIS Ventures, the venture arm of FIS, made an investment in NYDIG for an undisclosed amount.

"While bitcoin adoption is increasing, an accessibility and credibility gap remains for too many who want to buy, sell and hold," said Robert Gutmann, co-founder and CEO of NYDIG. "Our partnership with FIS, and their core banking clients, bridges this gap."

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