Union Bank of the Philippines, commonly known as UnionBank, has announced the upcoming launch of another crypto service for its customers. The financial institution will offer select users of its mobile app the option to exchange bitcoin and other digital currencies without a separate wallet.
UnionBank to Add In-App Crypto Exchange Feature, Reportedly First in the Philippines
Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) is working to become the first universal bank in the country to feature cryptocurrency exchange within its mobile application. Users will be able to buy and sell cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin directly from the banking app, the lender said, removing the need for third-party wallets.
In a statement quoted by the ABS-CBN broadcast network, Unionbank shared its view that blockchain is a technology that will power the future of banking. “At the same time, we also recognize that cryptocurrency has been one of the services that many customers are already looking for, especially the younger generation, and that demand has been accelerated by the pandemic,” said Cathy Cassa, Head of Digital Assets. Commented on Markets, Blockchain and Application Programming.
UnionBank, which is one of the top 10 banks under management in the Philippines, has already established itself as a crypto-friendly institution. About a year ago, it announced preparations to launch a custody service for cryptocurrencies, and in January this year, the bank unveiled a plan to facilitate crypto trading.
UnionBank explained that the new exchange functionality will initially be offered to randomly pre-selected users of the banking app, but stressed that it will aim for a wider rollout in the near future. Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Technology and Operations Officer, and Chief Transformation Officer Henry Aguda are quoted as saying:
Not only does this help us ensure that the bank is more future ready, we are also able to meet the needs of our customers who use cryptocurrencies.
The top executive said the in-app crypto exchange feature is among the projects the bank is working on as it prepares to enter the metaverse. Another initiative in this direction is the partnership with NFT game Art of Dreams, which was announced in April. The bank also intends to launch the Metaverse Center of Excellence in the coming months.
While the platforms of some digital banks in the Philippines, such as Maya, are already offering exchange options for crypto assets, UnionBank will be the first major traditional lender to implement one. The bank is a licensed cryptocurrency exchange. Banco Central ng Pilipinas, the country’s central bank, is the authority that issues licenses to crypto trading platforms and service providers in the Philippines.
Do you expect other banks in the Philippines to offer crypto-related features in their mobile apps? Tell us in the comments section below.
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