Japan: Major Finance Firm SBI Opens Its Crypto Exchange to Traders

Japanese internet giant SBI Holdings formally launched the public version of its cryptocurrency exchange VCTRADE, according to an official announcement July 17.

The move came after several months of delays as SBI conformed with regulatory demands for tightened security.

“Account opening is available for individuals from 20 to 70 years old residing in Japan,” a brief notice confirmed, adding that “applications for setting up accounts from corporate customers are not currently accepted.”

SBI has become an active blockchain presence over the past year, being notable for its endorsement of payment network Ripple.

VCTRADE initially catered to the network’s XRP token when the company launched a private trial of the platform in June, going on to add support for Bitcoin Cash (BCH) a week before Bitcoin itself.

Having appeared to meet the stringent security prerequisites for the cryptocurrency exchanges serving the domestic market, SBI now has an advantage over other actors in an increasingly crowded arena.

The next twelve months should see additional platform debuts in Japan from Yahoo! among others, while U.S. exchange Coinbase is also attempting to corner the space.