XP Group, owner of the largest investment firm in Brazil, XP Investimentos, confirmed it would launch a cryptocurrency exchange this week – despite its CEO saying he wished it “didn’t exist.”
Benchimol: ‘We Felt Obligated’
As Bloomberg reports quoting Guilherme Benchimol at an event in Sao Paulo, XP will finally give in to investor demand and begin a Bitcoin and Ethereum trading operation after six months of rumors.
“I must confess, this is a theme I’d rather didn’t exist, but it does,” the publication reports him as saying.
We felt obligated to start advancing in this market.
Like many South American markets, Brazil has seen a palpable uptick in Bitcoin $6769.49 +0.51% trading activity. While its figures do not match those of markets such as Chile, Argentina and Venezuela, weekly volumes for P2P platform Localbitcoins alone regularly top 1.5 million reals ($367,000).
XP Investimentos had been planning its entry into the market since at least April, insiders telling the press at the time a crypto trading platform was incoming. The company registered an entity called XP COIN INTERMEDIACAO in August last year.
The final product will go by the name of XDEX – perhaps a nod to the decentralized exchange phenomenon – and involve a team of around 40, Bloomberg adds.
Bitcoiners Bite Back Against Banks
Brazil’s extant exchange and wider cryptocurrency business sector is meanwhile struggling with an increasingly hostile landscape involving banks.
Similar to complaints in Poland in recent months, a government agency is now investigating claims that those businesses are subject to account shutdowns by institutions which would rather not deal in crypto-related transactions.
“…It does not seem reasonable for banks to apply restrictive measures a priori on a straight-line basis to all cryptocurrency companies, without examining the level of compliance and anti-fraud measures adopted by individual brokerage firm,” the agency told Reuters when the news surfaced this week.