London-based global bank Barclays has reportedly stopped banking top cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase. The crypto trading platform has already found a replacement in the U.K.
According to CoinDesk, the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange now has a banking relationship with U.K. upstart ClearBank. The situation has, however, impacted the exchange’s customers as Barclays connected it to the country’s Faster Payments Scheme (FPS), enabling instant GBP deposits and withdrawals at the exchange.
The end of the exchange’s relationship with Barclays, CoinDesk reports, disrupted its access to the FPS, which slowed down GBP deposits and withdrawals. As CryptoGlobe covered it added support for GBP deposits and withdrawals in August of last year.
Last month, the cryptocurrency exchange started requiring a minimum deposit of £1,000 from U.K. users, which could suggest its relationship with Barclays ended at the time. ClearBank is set to restore its access to the FPS by the end of the third quarter.
While the reason behind the relationship’s end isn’t clear, some of the unnamed sources the news outlet cites claim Barclays got cold feet about having cryptocurrency clients. An unnamed CEO of a U.K. crypto company was quoted as saying:
It is my understanding that Barclays’ risk appetite has contracted a little – I’m not sure exactly why or what’s been driving that, maybe there has been some activity they are not happy with. But it’s about Barclays’ comfort level with crypto as a whole.
Another source started the Coinbase-Barclays relationship was a pilot program that is now over. News of the development notably come shortly after Coinbase revealed it’s delisting privacy-oriented cryptocurrency Zcash.
Zcash, as reported, uses a type of zero-knowledge proof technology called zk-SNARKs, which allow those who check the blockchain to know that a transaction has indeed happened, without knowing anything about who sent it or received it. Some claim the decision is related to Coinbase’s new relationship with ClearBank.
Coinbase also has a banking relationship with LHV Bank, an Estonia-based financial institution that’s reportedly helping it regain access to the FPS as well. Despite the end of the Coinbase-Barclays deal, the latter still offers banking services to other cryptocurrency firms.
Barclays, according to the report, still banks crypto wallet provider Blockchain.info, which late last month launched a cryptoasset trading platform called PIT. The bank has also worked with fintech startup Circle, although it isn’t clear if it still does.