SBI Holdings, a Japanese financial giant, is planning to establish a crypto joint venture with international financial firms in an effort to expand its cryptocurrency business. The company purchased the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange TaoTao in 2020.
During an interview with Reuters, Yoshitaka Kitao, the CEO of SBI Holdings, said that the company’s merger and acquisition (M&A) strategy is not like taking minority stakes in several companies. SBI is planning to partner with leading crypto firms around the world.
SBI Holdings reported a massive surge in cryptocurrency profits for the nine months through December 2020. Pretax profit from its crypto business stood at 6.7 billion yen ($64 million), which is up 83% compared to the same period in 2019.
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XRP, the world’s fifth most valuable cryptocurrency received support from SBI Holdings in the recent weeks after the SEC’s lawsuit against Ripple. The company announced earlier this month that it will allow customers to lend XRP in return for interest. Yoshitaka Kitao pointed out in December 2020 that according to the Japanese financial regulator, XRP is not a security.
“To become number one in the world, our choice is buying a leading company or creating an alliance with major global companies. Our M&A strategy will not be something like taking minority stakes in many companies. Investors once lived in the world where they invested in stocks or bonds, it’s not an either-or situation anymore,” Kitao said. The CEO of SBI also outlined a growing institutional interest in cryptocurrency assets. The company aims to expand its crypto business through large-scale mergers and acquisitions. “Institutional investors, mainly hedge funds, have recently started investing in cryptocurrencies…Not just institutional investors but also Elon Musk has,” Kitao added.
SBI Holdings acquired crypto trading firm B2C2 in December 2020. Kitao mentioned in the recent interview that at least two deals were under discussion for a crypto joint venture, but the company did not disclose the names of the potential partners.