Standard Chartered has become the first bank to join the Global Digital Finance (GDF) Patron Board, a network of companies looking to raise standards across the crypto sector. 

The GDF – which currently has a membership of 100 global organisations and 350 industry professionals – primarily focuses on raising standards relating to custody, settlement finality, and brokerage within the crypto and digital asset spaces, including the formulation of code of conduct in cooperation with regulators and policy makers.

Standard Chartered’s membership of the GDF represents a continued mainstream acceptance of crypto and digital currencies, particularly by international banking and financial institutions such as PayPal and HSBC.

“We look forward to opportunities where we can collaborate with other global experts to support the adoption of digital assets as well as contribute, facilitate and lead the industry dialogue on digital assets standards,” said Geoff Kot, Global Head of Financial Markets Electronic Trading & Platforms, Standard Chartered.

“We believe thoughtful adoption of digital assets based on the principles of consumer protection and compliance can promote a more efficient and inclusive financial system, and banks have an ongoing responsibility to support the evolution of an open and trusted global financial architecture.”

For the London-based, LSE-registered Standard Chartered, the partnership marks a further extension of its collaborations with fintechs and further engagement with industry partners to discuss digital asset structures.

The multinational bank’s SC Ventures unit earlier launched Zodia in partnership with Northern Trust, as Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) approved cryptocurrency custodian for institutional investors. Additionally, the company launched a digital asset brokerage and exchange platform for institutional and corporate clients in June, working alongside the BC Group.

Lawrence Wintermeyer, Executive Co-Chair of GDF, remarked: “As institutional adoption of digital assets rapidly evolves, we must ensure there is the highest level of industry-wide best practices and standards in place, aligned to emerging policy and regulation thinking and development. GDF and our members are at the forefront of creating these standards in a shared engagement forum with market participants, policymakers, and regulators. 

“We are delighted that Standard Chartered has joined the 10 members of our Patron Board, setting GDF’s strategic direction. Their leadership will greatly support financial institutions helping to raise the standards for custody, settlement finality, and brokerage across the crypto and digital assets landscape.”