Omega One Crypto Agency Brokerage to Set Up in BermudaBy
Government, company pursue digital-currency custody business
New regulations plus reinsurance experience draw investments
Omega One, an agency brokerage for cryptocurrencies, will open an office in Bermuda to take advantage of the island’s regulations, and work with insurers and the government to help set up a business to securely hold and insure digital currencies on behalf of investors.
Bermuda is adopting regulations and legislation for digital-currency businesses and already has attracted a long list of companies planning to set up there, including Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. As the biggest global center for the reinsurance industry, with a developed legal and technical infrastructure, the country is also a logical place to set up insured custody services for increasing institutional investment, said Omega One Chief Executive Officer Alex Gordon-Brander.
“All assets will be digital assets in a few years and we need an on-ramp where the current legal form of the assets can reside,” Gordon-Brander said. “Bermuda has an incredibly strong legal, technical, reputational jurisdiction for financial services in general, but particularly for custody of assets and reinsurance.”
Gordon-Brander and Bermuda Premier David Burt signed an agreement under which New York-based Omega One promises to hire at least 20 Bermudians over the next three years, donate 1 percent of cash raised through a planned token sale to Bermuda charities, and collaborate with the government on developing a digital-asset custody union. Bermuda’s lower house of parliament has approved rules to regulate initial coin offerings, ahead of many of the world’s regulators, and a Digital Asset Business Act has also been introduced.
A Bermudian delegation led by Burt was ubiquitous at conferences and events in New York during Blockchain Week, intended to boost cryptocurrency- and blockchain-based businesses.
“Bermuda as a country wants to be a center of innovation,” Burt said in an interview. “We have the infrastructure, we have an educated populace, and we will provide regulatory certitude for companies in this space.”
Bermuda also has an established reinsurance industry that’s managing a huge amount of assets, Gordon-Brander said.
“Bermuda is to assets as New Zealand is to sheep,” Gordon-Brander said. “The ratio of assets to population is about $8 million per inhabitant.”