BitMEX Execs Plan to Acquire One of Germany’s Oldest Banks

The acquisition is the latest example of a cryptocurrency company making a move into traditional banking

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BitMEX CEO Andrew Höptner

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key takeaways

  • BitMEX executives are planning on buying a 268-year-old bank
  • Pending regulatory approval, BXM Operations AG will purchase Bankhaus von der Heydt for an undisclosed amount

BitMEX’s top brass is laying the groundwork for the company’s European expansion.

BXM Operations AG, the company founded by BitMEX CEO Alexander Höptner and CFO Stephan Lutz, announced plans on Tuesday to acquire German bank Bankhaus von der Heydt. 

The acquisition of the 268-year-old bank is the first step toward creating a one-stop shop for regulated cryptocurrency products across Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the company said

“Through combining the regulated digital assets expertise of Bankhaus von der Heydt with the crypto innovation and scale of BitMEX, I believe we can create a regulated crypto products powerhouse in the heart of Europe,” Höptner said in a statement. 

Bankhaus von der Heydt is no stranger to digital assets. In October, the Munich bank revealed plans to expand into crypto banking through a custody deal with Fireblocks, becoming one of the first banks to offer crypto services in the region. In addition to custody, Bankhaus von der Heydt currently offers blockchain payments services.

BitMEX is particularly looking to Germany to begin its European expansion, given the country’s business-friendly economy, Lutz said. BXM Operations AG is headquartered in Germany. 

The announcement is in line with a growing trend of cryptocurrency companies expanding into traditional banking services. Crypto exchanges including Coinbase and Kraken now offer lending and prime brokerage services, for example. 

BXM Operations AG and Bankhaus von der Heydt’s current owner, Dietrich von Boetticher, have agreed on terms — pending approval from German regulator BaFun. 

Bankhaus von der Heydt will continue its banking operations after the deal is finalized, according to BXM Operations AG. Höptner and Lutz will serve on the bank’s supervisory board. 

The acquisition is expected to be finalized by the middle of the year. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

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