Uphold becomes registered crypto-asset firm in UK post-FCA approval


A total of 200 crypto firms have applied for the U.K.’s “crypto license,” but tough requirements have forced many to withdraw their applications.

A European subsidiary of United States-based crypto trading platform Uphold has received approval from the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

According to the FCA website, Uphold’s U.K. subsidiary Uphold Europe Limited gained regulatory approval on Thursday, joining the select list of 32 firms that have received FCA approval as Registered Crypto Asset service providers out of the 200 that applied. The approval signifies that the firm is in compliance with the U.K. Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing regulations.

FCA Registered Crypto Asset firms. Source: FCA

For crypto exchanges and service providers to offer their services to U.K.-based customers, they must register with the FCA and comply with the existing Anti-Money Laundering rules. The FCA has granted three crypto licenses — to eToro, Uphold and Light Technology — in 2022.

Related: BitPanda to provide crypto custody with the acquisition of FCA-approved Trustology

The U.K.’s Crypto Asset Firm Registration is considered one of the most stringent, as some of the leading global crypto exchanges such as Binance have failed to secure the license. The 32 approved include major names like Gemini, Genesis, Coinjar and Robinhood.

With the approval, Uphold aims to expand its range of services to U.K. customers. The CEO of the firm believes the FCA approval highlights its commitment to compliance and regulations. Uphold didn’t immediately respond to Cointelegraph’s request for comments.

The U.K. has emerged as one of the leading nations in terms of strict crypto compliance requirements. Even though the crypto market is not formally regulated there, AML compliance and registration have made it one of the tougher regulatory markets to crack for crypto firms.