Finder CEO Fred Schebesta considers building a digital currency bank in Australia in collaboration with an already licenced deposit-taking institution.
Sydney-based comparison website Finder is considering a partnership with an existing bank to create the “first crypto bank of Australia”, Fred Schebesta, co-founder and CEO of Finder, told Australian publication news.com.au on Tuesday.
The entrepreneur and crypto proponent believes the virtual currency bank could be operational within the coming 18 months, having in mind that three Australian banks already have “pure crypto teams” – Silvergate Bank, Signature Bank and Bank of Silicon Valley.
Bank of Silicon Valley (Wikimedia Commons)
There is general skepticism towards cryptocurrencies among major banks, the reason for that being plain fear, according to Schebesta. Banks are closing crypto-related accounts and refusing to bank people, but that is not necessary, since there is a way to safely deal with digital currencies and bring them to banks, he maintained.
While some central banks are beginning to reconsider their disapproval of cryptocurrencies, Tony Richards from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) underlined Bitcoin is impractical as a form of money due to the high risk involved.
Schebesta, who is also a host of a daily talk show on virtual currencies, seems to be unconcerned by the plunge of crypto prices since the market peak in December 2017.
“At its core, you’ve got to remember, just because the price of [B]itcoin has gone down and people feel angry, that doesn’t reduce the interest,” he said and gave the Consensus crypto conference on New York where people had to queue for 30 minutes to get up the lift.
Notably, Finder website started offering cryptocurrency comparisons since September last year.
Finder was first launched in Australia in 2009, but its success there as a personal finance comparison site led to the launch of a US version. Currently operating in 10 countries, Finder is planning an expansion to an additional 10 countries over the course of the year, according to the publication.