NYDFS Grants Rare Bitlicense

The New York State Department of Financial Services has approved the application of Square, Inc., for a virtual currency license, according to Financial Services Superintendent Maria Vullo.

Prior to granting the license, Square has operated with a money-transmitter license from the NYSDFS.

“DFS is pleased to approve Square’s application and welcomes them to New York’s expanding and well-regulated virtual currency market,” said Superintendent Vullo. “DFS continues to work in support of a vibrant and competitive virtual currency market that connects and empowers New Yorkers in a global marketplace while ensuring strong state-regulatory oversight is in place.”

DFS has conducted a comprehensive review of Square’s application, including the company’s anti-money laundering, anti-fraud, capitalization, consumer protection, and cybersecurity policies. The new licensee is subject to ongoing supervision by DFS.

“We are thrilled to now provide New Yorkers with Cash App’s quick and simple way to buy and sell bitcoin,” said Brian Grassadonia, Head of Cash App. “Square and the New York State DFS share a vision of empowering people with greater access to the financial system and today’s news is an important step in realizing that goal.”

Square provides tools that help sellers start, run, and grow their businesses. Square’s hardware enables sellers to accept credit card and contactless payments. Meanwhile, its software and other business services help sellers manage inventory, locations, and employees; provide powerful business analytics; access financing; and utilize tools to engage with their customers. Square’s Cash App provides customers with access to a range of financial services including a simple way to buy and sell Bitcoin.

With the Square approval, DFS has now approved nine firms for virtual currency charters or licenses, while denying those applications that did not meet DFS’s standards. DFS has also granted licenses to Xapo, Inc., Genesis Global Trading Inc., bitFlyer USA, Coinbase Inc., XRP II and Circle Internet Financial, and charters to Gemini Trust Company and Paxos (formerly itBit Trust Company).

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