Bitcoin.de's long-standing partnership with Fidor Bank has finally borne fruit, with the company claiming it is the world’s first bitcoin trading platform with a "direct connection to the classic banking system".
Bitcoin.de says the arrangement brings a far faster service, allowing EUR/BTC trades to be completed within "seconds" when both customers have a free 'FIDOR Smart Giro Account'.
Extra security is also promised, with customers' funds staying within their Fidor Bank accounts, rather than being held by a centralised body, such as an exchange.
In the case of insolvency or security breach, Bitcoin.de points out, those funds are all too easily lost, with no guarantee of return. The same applies should a bitcoin exchange prove fraudulent, as was alleged recently in Hong Kong.
Accounts held at Fidor Bank – which, as a licensed German bank, is highly regulated – are covered by a "standard deposit security of €100,000".
To put this arrangement in place, took over one and a half years of development work, with regulatory requirements being taken into account and a new set of Terms and Conditions being created for the business, according to Bitcoin.de.
'Massively enhanced security'
Oliver Flaskämper, board member of Bitcoin Deutschland AG, said.
“That is not only good news for all bitcoin fans, but also good news for FinTech companies based in Germany. Together with the right partners more is possible in Germany than one might think.”
Fidor Bank CEO Matthias Kröner explained that, in the bitcoin environment, conducting money transactions promptly from one bank customer to another enhances security "massively".
"As such," he said, "Fidor Bank is setting a further milestone in digital banking”.
Bitcoin.de is a peer-to-peer bitcoin trading platform that allows bitcoin buyers and sellers to deal directly with one another, rather than dealing with the company, as is the case with bitcoin exchanges.
In October 2013, digital currency exchange Kraken also forged a partnership with Fidor to offer its European customers regulated bitcoin trading services.
Unlike most other banks globally, Fidor seems very open to cryptocurrency business, as well as the technology itself. In May of last year, it became the first bank to integrate Ripple's payment protocol, allowing its customers to instantly send any currency in any amount through the bank's money transfer system.
Kröner said at the time:
"Ripple enables us to securely and instantly send money anywhere in the world at no additional cost and through the same customer facing products and relationships we offer today."
Finding solutions to risks of centralising customers' funds in a single company's bank account seems to be a growing trend. In Hong Kong, bitcoin exchange Gatecoin recently launched, promising segregated bank accounts for customers, and notably covering 40 countries across the globe.
Euro connection image via Shutterstock