Crypto payments firm BitPay has filed to become a national bank in the U.S.
According to a Dec. 8 legal notice published by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, BitPay has applied to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) to organize a federally regulated bank, dubbed the BitPay National Trust Bank, headquartered in the state of Georgia. The news was first reported by The Block.
The filing calls for a 30-day comment period, with comments to be directed to the OCC Licensing Director.
OCC acting chief Brian Brooks announced earlier this year that he would seek to set up a licensing regime for fintech startups, including crypto firms, to streamline their operations within the U.S. At present, crypto exchanges and other digital payment firms typically must acquire money transmitter licenses in each of the U.S. states and territories they hope to operate in.
By becoming a national bank, companies like BitPay could bypass this state-by-state regime.
According to BitPay’s application, the total capitalization its national bank would receive for shares issued would fall just under $12 million, with 120 million shares to be issued.