The individual committees will vote on the crypto project in early 2022. Should the members approve the proposal, it will be launched in the same year and expose over 50 million members to cryptocurrency trading via their checking accounts.
The German Savings Banks Association, a conglomeration of over 400 savings banks across the country, is working on a digital wallet project that will enable them to trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum. According to a report in The Capital, a local business publication, the digital wallet option would be accessible directly through savings accounts.
Cryptocurrency trading services
According to the report, the association has a dedicated team, the IT service provider S-Payment working on the concept. They expect savings banks’ committees to vote on the project at the beginning of the following year. If the vote succeeds, the savings banks working under the German Savings Banks Association (Deutscher Sparkassen- und Giroverband) would be able to launch cryptocurrency trading services.
Currently, the association has a membership of about 400 savings banks working independently, managed locally, and focusing on customers in the region where it is situated. With a combined customer base of around 50 million and €1.4 trillion ($1.58 trillion) in assets under management, savings banks are considered the market leaders among German financial institutions.
A huge interest in the new asset class
Capital Magazine explained that the wallet project would start a pilot program involving individual savings banks if approved. They can then decide whether to support cryptocurrency trading.
The report also indicated that the banks involved had shown early interest, as investors are increasingly looking for alternative investments. A spokesperson for the association revealed a huge interest in the new asset class. Helmut Schleweis, the president of the German Savings Banks Association, stated:
“The current rising prices and low-interest rates are a toxic mix fueling an erosion of wealth as the new product is planned for launch amid rising inflation.”
The incoming government in Germany recently signed a coalition agreement, citing that cryptocurrencies and blockchain would be two of the main focuses for the country’s development in the coming four years.