US-based OANDA gets green light to offer crypto trading in the UK


United States-based crypto brokerage firm OANDA is set to begin crypto trading services in the United Kingdom via its registered subsidiary, OANDA Crypto. The crypto subsidiary was established last year after the cryptocurrency brokerage firm acquired a majority stake in Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)-registered Coinpass.

The new crypto trading platform will offer trading services for over 63 cryptocurrency pairs, including Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH), with plans to add more tokens and features in the coming years.

OANDA’s recent expansion in the U.K. comes more than a year after the firm opened crypto trading services in the U.S. in partnership with Paxos, a popular crypto trading platform. The firm recently moved its European operations away from Malta to Warsaw in Poland, acquiring Polish broker Dom Maklerski TMS Brokers SA, which was later rebranded to OANDA TMS.

The crypto brokerage firm has often chosen regions with strict regulatory requirements, first the U.S. and now the United Kingdom. Several leading crypto companies have withdrawn their services in the U.K. since October 2023 after FCA’s new regulatory guidelines on crypto advertising. Crypto firms such as Bybit and Revolut temporarily suspended their operations in the U.K. last year, citing the new FCA promotion rules.

Related: Controversial UK legislation creates ‘positive frictions’ for crypto users

The new advertising rules only allow FCA-registered virtual asset service providers to promote their activities in the country. The rules also require crypto firms to adapt their online platforms significantly to better warn potential customers of investment risks.

The FCA found “significant levels of non-compliance” from crypto firms in violation of the crypto promotion rules that came into effect on Oct. 8, 2023. The regulator highlighted that between Oct. 8 and Dec. 31, 2023, it issued 450 consumer alerts against virtual asset companies illegally promoting crypto.

On the other hand, OANDA’s head of digital assets, Lucian Lauerman, called the U.K. market a very well-educated and active market. He added that the market is becoming “more aligned with the markets where we’ve traditionally operated. The regulatory bar has been set slightly higher.”

Cointelegraph reached out to OANDA for comments but has yet to receive a response.

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