- Bitwala partnered with Celsius Network to introduce this product.
- Clients can open Bitcoin interest accounts with as little £26.52 worth of BTC.
- Through this launch, Bitwala has become the only neobank that offers Bitcoin interest accounts.
Bitwala, a German neobank has introduced a Bitcoin Interest Account product. A report unveiled this news on May 14, noting that this product will let the bank’s 80,000 clients purchase, hold, and earn interests of up to 4.3% on BTC. Per the publication, the bank joined hands with Celsius Network, a crypto lending platform to launch this product.
Reportedly, this move makes Bitwala the first classic bank to pay its clients for holding BTC. As such, the bank has joined three other decentralized finance (DeFi) apps that are currently offering similar products. Bitwala is widely regulated and offers fiat and crypto services in 32 European countries. The bank also has a license from SolarisBank AG, a leading German bank. These two facts explain why Bitwala’s interest rates are considerably lower than those of DeFi apps, which offer up to 8.6% interest per annum.
Weekly interest payments on as little as £26.52 worth of BTC
Through Bitwala’s collaboration with Celsius Network, the bank’s clients will be able to buy as little as £26.52 worth of BTC. By deciding to hold their purchased BTC in the bank’s Bitcoin Interest Account, the users will be in a position to earn weekly interest payouts. Bitwala will lend out the BTC in their accounts to trusted partners via Celsius Network. After the partners return the borrowed funds, the bank would convert the BTC to euros immediately.
Commenting on this new product, Bitwala’s CEO, Ben Jones said,
“At this time, more and more people trust in Bitcoin. Bitwala is the everyday bridge to it. We are now partnering with Celsius Network, the world’s leading provider of crypto loans, so that our customers can leverage Bitcoin holdings wherever they are.”
According to Jones, Bitcoin’s halving is yet another reminder that state money cannot be inflated eternally.
Neobanks still find getting licenses an uphill task
This news comes as multiple continue striving to get licenses for their operations. In a bid to bridge the wide gap between crypto and fiats, these banks have faced heavy resistance from central banks. While some have been fortunate enough to get full banking licenses, none of them save for Bitwise offer Bitcoin investment accounts.
For instance, Revolut, a UK-based neobank struggled to get licensing in Europe. The bank was lucky to get full licensing in Europe in late 2018. After conquering Europe, the startup tried branching out to Australia where it faced challenges while trying to get licensed in the country. Due to this, Revolut is not technically a bank in Australia. It instead refers to itself as an electronic money institution.
Do you think Bitwala’s introduction of its Bitcoin Interest Account will inspire other neobanks to introduce crypto interest accounts? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.