BitMEX buys one of the oldest banks in Germany
One of Germany's oldest banks is about to be purchased by a company closely related to crypto exchange BitMEX, with the goal of establishing regulated crypto products in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
BXM Operations AG, a company founded by BitMEX CEO Alexander Höptner and CFO Stephan Lutz, has announced plans to purchase Bankhaus von der Heydt, a bank located in Munich, Germany, and also one of Germany’s oldest banks. Bankhaus von der Heydt has been in operation since 1754, indeed the company website is at 1754.eu.
The deal is subject to approval by the German financial services regulatory authority BaFin. Though BXM Operations AG is not the same company as BitMEX, it is closely related as it is founded by the CEO and CFO of BitMEX. Furthermore, according to the blog post announcing the deal, the purpose is clearly to establish “a one-stop-shop for regulated crypto products in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.”
Not the bank’s first crypto deal
According to the blog post announcement, this step was preceded by the launch of BitMEX Link in Europe, a brokerage service based in Switzerland that facilitates trading in digital assets. The acquisition of Bankhaus von der Heydt is now “the next step in the Group’s European expansion and product development.”
This is, however, not Bankhaus von der Heydt’s first encounter with crypto. In mid-October last year the bank announced a partnership with Coindex GmbH, a German platform that offers index-based investment and savings plans in crypto assets, to enable the bank to offer its customers cryptocurrency trading and custody services.
Also announced in October, Bankhaus von der Heydt went into partnership with digital asset custody provider Fireblocks to expand its offerings of digital asset banking, securitization and fund services, and in December 2020, Bankhaus von der Heydt partnered with Bitbond to issue the first euro stablecoin (EURB) on the Stellar network.
BXM Operations AG and Bankhaus von der Heydt’s current owner, Dietrich von Boetticher, have signed a purchase agreement, which will be completed only with BaFin’s regulatory approval. The transaction is expected to be complete in mid-2022.
BitMEX founders join the board
BXM Operations AG and Mr. von Boetticher have agreed not to disclose the purchase price or other financial details of the transaction. Once the purchase is finalized, the bank will continue to be operated as a standalone business unit, with Alexander Höptner and Stephan Lutz joining its supervisory board.
“Through combining the regulated digital assets expertise of Bankhaus von der Heydt with the crypto innovation and scale of BitMEX, I believe we can create a regulated crypto products powerhouse in the heart of Europe,” says Alexander Höptner in the blog post.