The Swiss Post Office is the newest authority to embrace bitcoin (BTC) as it has confirmed in an announcement the debut of Bitcoin Vaults.
Despite bitcoin being significantly low from its all-time high noted in the month of November last year, the banking arm of the Swiss Post Office, PostFinance, plans “to grant customers access to cryptocurrencies within the next couple of years.”
The announcement could foreshadow an acceleration of general bitcoin adoption in Switzerland. The Swiss banking and finance sector needs innovation as the old banking model is disrupted by bitcoin’s global adoption curve.
After the canton Zug had become home of many bitcoin firms following the issuance of specialized regulation, recently the canton of Lugano announced plans to establish bitcoin as “de-facto” legal tender.
PostFinance is the fifth-largest banking institute in Switzerland with over CHF 110 billion on its balance sheet. The new line of business will allow its 2.69 million customers to buy, sell and hold bitcoin beginning in 2024, according to a report from SwissInfo.
“Swiss-made” like the luxury watches, a bitcoin vault from Switzerland could immediately gain popularity. The managers of PostFinance might already have adopted an accumulation plan.
Currently, PostFinance offers bitcoin exposure to clients via its fintech brand Yuh but it relies heavily on Swissquote, the first Swiss bank to offer bitcoin trading for retail clients in 2017. Now, the firm aims to directly enter the world of bitcoin with its own brokerage and bitcoin account and wallet service.
“Our clients want direct access to this market through their house bank,” says PostFinance head of retail banking Sandra Lienhart. “Given the growing institutionalisation [of cryptocurrencies] in the last 18 months, this is the ideal time to enter the market.”
Furthemore, the Swiss Post Office also added that it had recently issued a Bitcoin postage stamp and stated that if it can do it, it’s bank can certainly offer Bitcoin Vaults.
Switzerland-based firms have been aggressively adopting cryptocurrencies as recently, luxury watchmaker TAG Heuer confirmed that it will accept bitcoin as payments. Startup Relai also raised money at a $40 million in a funding round.
The Swiss postal banking arm will join the likes of other traditional institutions who have embraced bitcoin such as: Credit Suisse, Julius Baer, LGT Bank, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Fidelity among many others.