NAB Ventures Makes Strategic Investment in Zodia Custody 

UTC by Chimamanda U. Martha · 2 min read
NAB Ventures Makes Strategic Investment in Zodia Custody 
Photo: NAB / Facebook

On Wednesday, June 19, NAB Ventures, the investment unit of the National Australia Bank (NAB), one of the four largest financial institutions in Australia, announced a strategic investment in Zodia Custody, marking its entry into the cryptocurrency space.

According to reports, NAB Ventures acquired an undisclosed stake in Zodia Custody, an institution-grade crypto custodian. The company is already backed by prominent financial companies such as Standard Chartered Bank, Northern Trust, and SBI Holdings

With this strategic investment, NAB Ventures has become the fourth major partner of Zodia Custody. The crypto custody firm established its presence in Australia towards the end of 2023 and is now poised for further growth with the investment firm as its Australian partner.

NAB said it decision to invest in Zodia Custody was driven by several factors including the company’s innovative approach, institution-grade security, and strong regulatory compliance. Zodia Custody plans to expand its footprint in Australia. The company said its immediate priorities include collaborating with local exchanges to safeguard their assets.

Zodia has already been selected by several digital asset trading platforms in Australia to serve as their custodian, in preparation for upcoming regulations requiring exchanges to be licensed under the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). These regulations, expected to be implemented next year, will cover both custody and licensing rules that companies need to comply with to avoid legal consequences.

Anticipating Regulatory Changes

Zodia’s CEO, Julian Sawyer, said that the upcoming regulations in Australia could “significantly change the landscape” of the crypto economy in the country. He believes the new laws will have a major impact on how the industry operates once they are implemented in 2025.

Sawyer also referenced the regulatory changes in Hong Kong and Japan, noting how their new crypto regulations transformed the way cryptocurrencies are viewed and utilized in those regions. Like both countries, he anticipates that Australia’s new laws will likely include the “segregation of digital assets and requirements to hold them in cold storage.”

Positioning as the Custodian of Choice

In addition to offering custody services to local exchanges, Zodia Custody is also preparing itself to position as the custodian of choice for applicants awaiting the listing of their crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

Following in the footsteps of both the United States and Hong Kong, Australia’s financial regulator approved the trading of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the country, allowing investors to participate in the emerging economy.

On June 4, the country’s asset manager Monochrome began trading the first spot Bitcoin ETFs that directly tracks the price of the crypto asset on Cboe Australia.

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