The San Juan Mercantile Bank & Trust International (SJMBT) has received its first client deposit and commenced operations, following the bank’s receipt last month of its license to operate from Puerto Rico’s Office of the Commission of Financial Institutions.
SJMBT offers fiat and digital asset custody and settlement services, and it is expected to be integrated with the digital currency trading platforms offered by its affiliate, the San Juan Mercantile Exchange (SJMX).
This means that customers will have the ability to hold and manage both fiat currency and digital assets on a single, integrated platform. Deposits of fiat currency are held by the bank on behalf of its clients with its regulated correspondent banks, and digital assets are held by approved digital asset custodians. Partnering with multiple custodians is intended to reduce costs and improve security. Based on the integration between the bank and the trading platforms of SJMX, customer balances on deposit with the bank will inform real-time trading limits at the exchange, enabling it to settle all trades routed through the bank on a real-time basis.
Nick Varelakis, president and COO of SJMBT, says: “Commencing SJMBT banking operations is a significant milestone. Institutional market participants in the digital asset space now have access to a licensed, fully regulated and operational banking partner that provides a secure environment for the matching and settlement of digital asset trades. As more liquidity venues onboard with SJMX to trade digital assets, SJMBT will provide critical services, such as real-time settlement and account re-balancing, in support of our customers’ trading activities.”
With the new customers onboarded at the bank, SJMX is able to launch exchange operations, via the SJMX Dark Pool platform and through SJMX Blocks, its OTC trading venue. The exchange plans to also launch a central limit order book (CLOB) trading platform, leveraging the global distribution capabilities of CQG.