In a blog post on Monday, publicly traded crypto exchange Coinbase announced that it had obtained a crypto asset service provider license in Italy. The Organismo Agenti e Mediatori, a crypto regulatory authority, has required all crypto firms to obtain a crypto asset service provider license before offering services to customers in the nation.
Coinbase claims to be among the first few companies to obtain the license. It will assist the firm in presenting new products and features to its Italian customers.
The crypto exchange plans to grow its presence throughout Europe in order to promote crypto adoption. It currently services consumers in nearly 40 European nations through offices in Ireland, the UK, and Germany. Meanwhile, Coinbase has multiple pending registrations or licensing applications in significant markets. The plan is to grow its user base by offering the Coinbase suite of retail, institutional, and ecosystem products.
“Gaining this regulatory approval is a testament to our close collaboration and positive working relationship with the Italian financial regulators,” said international and business development VP Nana Murugesan in the statement. “As we continue to grow across Europe and other regions, maintaining our strong regulatory relationships will ensure that we will continue to bring to market the products that our customers want, through the most trusted and secure platform in the cryptoeconomy.”
The crypto exchange faces tough competition in Europe from Rival exchange Binance, which also secured regulatory approval in Italy with the OAM last month. Both firms are actively growing their presence in Europe. Coinbase previously stated that it is in the midst of expanding into France, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands.
Crypto Winter Puts Coinbase in Crisis
When it comes to centralized exchanges, Coinbase seems to be experiencing the effects of the Crypto Winter the most. The largest American cryptocurrency exchange in terms of trading volume appears to have dropped off the list of top crypto exchanges used by traders and investors.
According to data compiled by Mizuho Securities USA, the American subsidiary of Japanese investment firm Mizuho Securities, Coinbase has slipped outside the Top 10 list of top crypto exchanges by trade volume, dropping to 14th position. This is concerning, given that the exchange was in 4th position late last year.
The Crypto Winter has predictably had a negative impact on the transaction volumes of most exchanges in the market, but Coinbase’s situation appears to be particularly concerning. The Mizuho analysts stated :
“We worry that the competitive nature of the industry is likely to require further increases in sales & marketing spend over time,”
Last week, the company faced rumors of liquidity concerns after announcing the termination of its affiliate marketing program in the United States. Meanwhile, the firm is also discontinuing Coinbase Pro advanced trading in order to shift it to the Coinbase account.
Coinbase’s non-fungible tokens (NFT) marketplace has struggled to acquire traction, despite rival GameStop’s NFT marketplace growing in popularity.