Crypto exchange Coinbase today announced on its blog that it has obtained a license from the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA) and, per a report by Fortune that cites “a person close to the company,” will open a derivatives exchange there “as soon as next week.”

Just last month, the exchange had been in talks with several of its institutional clients (in this case, market makers and investment firms) about opening a new overseas crypto-trading platform as U.S. regulators continue to give crypto businesses mixed signals.

The exchange also mentioned on its blog that it is talking with the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FRSA), a regulator of the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)—a crypto-friendly free economic zone in the territory of UAE—about the potential of opening a regulated exchange there.

On its European expansion, the post described CEO Brian Armstrong’s meetings in London this week with the UK’s Economic Secretary and City Minister, Andrew Griffith, the Bank of England, and leading regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), as “highly encouraging.”


Armstrong tweeted that in his conversation with Griffith he had brought up the matter of British banks blocking customers from paying crypto exchanges, calling the measure “not ok” and suggesting “further education and collaboration.”

He also said the UK is “moving fast on sensible crypto regulation.”

Armstrong vs U.S. regulators

Founded in July 2012, Coinbase’s apparent willingness to comply with domestic regulators has helped it to become the second largest exchange by trading volume, after its offshore rival Binance.


However, Armstrong is often a vocal critic of U.S. regulators, particularly the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which has been pursuing a regulation-by-enforcement strategy in an attempt to bring all cryptocurrencies and crypto businesses under its jurisdiction.

Armstrong’s criticisms of the SEC are widely echoed across the industry, and include the agency’s lack of transparency on what constitutes a security, as well as its recent crackdown on staking—which the SEC labeled as a security when it probed Coinbase’s own staking service earlier this year.

The Coinbase CEO even has allies within the Commission. Last Friday, Commissioner Hester Pierce lambasted the agency and shared a strongly worded dissent against its plan to change its definition of “exchange” in order to bring crypto exchanges under its jurisdiction.

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