British cryptocurrency fans can now buy and sell Bitcoin more easily, thanks to a deal between Barclays and Coinbase.
The cryptocurrency trading site has signed an agreement with the UK banking giant allowing it to open a bank account in the country, meaning Bitcoin trading can now be done directly in the UK.
Reuters says that Coinbase's UK subsidiary is the first to receive an e-money license from the national financial watchdog, and comes as the company revealed the UK is its largest market, growing at twice the rate of any other nation.
Prior to today's agreement, UK citizens looking to buy or trade Bitcoin had to use a more indirect approach that involved converting pounds to euros
Buyers would then have to complete their purchases through an Estonian bank -all steps that will be removed now, allowing a smoother experience all round.
“Having domestic GBP payments with Barclays reduces the cost, improves the customer experience…and makes the transaction faster,” said Zeeshan Feroz, Coinbase UK CEO.
“It’s a completely brand new industry. There’s a lot of understanding and risk management that’s needed.”