FINMA has confirmed that the company’s business model is compliant with the Swiss Banking Act.

ECUREX GmbH, the Zurich based bitcoin, litecoin and dashcoin exchange, has become the first digital currency exchange platform to be fully compliant with the Swiss Banking Act. 

According to ECUREX press-release, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has declared the ECUREX’s business model to be fully compliant with the Swiss Banking Act. The regulator released its findings on May 19, 2015 following sixteen months of investigation. Last April ECUREX also received a confirmation of its compliance with the Swiss Anti-Money Laundering Act.

Swiss authorities consider digital currencies in the same way as any other foreign currency. Thus the bitcoin exchange corresponds to financial intermediation and has to comply with both the Banking Act and the Anti-Money Laundering Act.

Paolo Tasca, CEO of ECUREX, said in a statement:

“Switzerland probably has the most challenging regulatory environment for such a business and we are thrilled to be the first with a business model that allows us to operate here. We think a stable regulatory environment is not only beneficial for us in the long-term, but also for our customers.”

The Swiss exchange is not operating yet having been waiting for the regulatory compliance confirmation. It plans to expand its services gradually in accordance with the licensing process. At the current stage it supports crypto-to-crypto trading only in three digital currency pairs. Later ECUREX plans to add four fiat currencies – Swiss francs, U.S. dollars, Euro and British pounds.

ECUREX is set up as a marketplace for professional traders and financial institutions. It takes security seriously by offering two-factor authentication and cold storage for deposits. Withdrawals are allowed to be made only once a day during “business hours”.

Switzerland is becoming more and more attractive for bitcoin businesses. As we reported last week, the first ever bitcoin bank was about to apply for a Swiss license. Last month also saw Xapo moving its headquarters to Zurich after meeting with some difficulties in California. And one of the key Swiss banks, UBS, demonstrated interest towards bitcoin and blockchain as well.

 

Nadya Krasnushkina