The Australian lender intends to commence the pilot in a few weeks and plans to expand the offering to more customers with more features in 2022


CBA to offer crypto services to customers. (Credit: Commonwealth Bank of Australia.)

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) is set to become the country’s first bank to allow its customers to buy, sell and hold crypto assets, directly through the CommBank app.

The bank has teamed up with Gemini for its regulated crypto exchange and custodian services, and Chainalysis for its blockchain data and analytics capabilities.

With the two partnerships, it is enabled to design a crypto exchange and custody service for customers, offered through a new feature in its app, said CBA.

The Australian lender intends to commence the pilot in a few weeks and plans to expand the offering with more features, to more customers in 2022.

The pilot will provide customers with access to up to ten select crypto assets, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin, said the company.

CBA CEO Matt Comyn said: “The emergence and growing demand for digital currencies from customers creates both challenges and opportunities for the financial services sector.

“We believe we can play an important role in crypto to address what’s clearly a growing customer need and provide capability, security and confidence in a crypto trading platform.

“In looking at ways that we can support our customers, we have made the strategic decision to form an exclusive partnership in Australia with Gemini, a global leader with strong security and a track record of serving large institutions.

“CBA will leverage Gemini’s crypto exchange and custody service and integrate it into the CommBank app through APIs.”

According to CBA research, the majority of its customers considers using crypto-assets as investment and are already buying, selling and holding crypto assets through different crypto exchanges.

The bank’s partnership with Chainalysis is aimed at ensuring compliance and alleviating the threat of crime through crypto-asset exchanges.

Chainalysis is engaged in providing data, software, services, and research to government agencies, exchanges, financial institutions, and insurance and cybersecurity companies.

Established in 2014, Gemini is a platform that enables customers to buy, sell, store, and earn cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, ether, and DeFi tokens.

Gemini business development global head Dave Abner said: “We are proud to be providing exchange and custody services to CBA as they begin to unlock access to cryptocurrency investments for many Australians.”

Chainalysis CEO and co-founder Michael Gronager said: “Financial institutions like CBA play an integral role in growing cryptocurrency adoption safely.

“We are thrilled to be a part of this important alliance with CBA and our partner Gemini to play a pioneering role in building trust in cryptocurrencies in the Australian market.”

Recently, CBA has announced a new strategic partnership with gift card disrupter Karta to revolutionise the gifting experience for consumers and businesses.