US crypto exchange Coinbase expands into Canada
US crypto exchange Coinbase has confirmed its expansion into Canada as part of its intention to create a platform that is “for Canadians, by Canadians”.
The company’s entry into what it describes as a “Go Deep” market will be supported by the integration of Interac e-Transfers into its platform, which has been made possible through its partnership with Peoples Trust Company, part of the Canadian financial services company Peoples Group.
The platform’s adoption of Interac e-Transfers, a popular funds transfer service in Canada, will enable its users to deposit and move money within their accounts in a secure and “almost instant” manner.
Coinbase’s announcement claims that over 50% of deposits have been made through the service within the last month.
It also claims that Canada is the second most “crypto-aware” country among its international markets, with 30% of Canadians planning to buy crypto within the next year, according to a Ontario Securities Commission survey.
The country’s prominent levels of crypto awareness alongside its rising technology ecosystem makes it “well positioned to be a global leader in the cryptoeconomy”, according to Nana Murugesan, VP of international and business development at Coinbase.
“As Coinbase’s next Go Deep Market, we are making significant investments to help Canadians access the benefits of cryptocurrency.”
And it appears as if the company has been gearing up to take the Canadian market for some time. It signed an enhanced Pre-Registration Undertaking (PRU) with the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) in March to aid in the development of a “strong digital currency regulatory framework”, while its product innovation tech hub and corporate venture capital arm, Coinbase Ventures, also remain active in the market.
Crypto in Canada
Despite its evident optimism towards the market, Coinbase’s Canadian expansion is seemingly going against the grain when compared to the industry at large.
Multiple firms have pulled out of Canada over the last year, all of which citing various elements of regulatory uncertainty in their decision to exit.
The beginning of the exodus could be attributed to the CSA tightening regulatory requirements for crypto exchanges back in February of this year, requiring participants to support “enhanced protections for the custody and segregation of crypto assets for Canadian clients and a prohibition on offering margin, credit or other forms of leverage”, among other changes.
A month after these changes were announced, the crypto and derivatives exchange OKX announced its intention to exit the market making specific reference to the aforementioned regulatory amendments imposed by the regulator.
Having signed the PRU with the CSA, it appears as though Coinbase is ready to take Canada’s new stance on crypto regulation in its stride, while also benefitting from the potential to claim a more significant market share.