The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has declared the IPO of pro-crypto Silvergate Bank effective. Its shares started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday. The crypto-friendly bank works with 756 customers in the crypto space, including Coinbase, Gemini, Circle, Bitstamp, Kraken, and Bittrex. The bank has attributed significant growth to its crypto business.
Silvergate Bank’s IPO
The U.S. SEC declared the initial public offering (IPO) of crypto-friendly Silvergate Bank effective on Wednesday. Its common stock subsequently began trading on the NYSE on Thursday under the symbol SI. The shares opened at $12.75, a 6.25% increase from its IPO price of $12, and closed at $12.62.
Opened in 1988, Silvergate Bank is a commercial bank with a focus on “creating the banking platform for innovators, especially in the digital currency industry, and developing product and service solutions addressing the needs of entrepreneurs,” the bank’s SEC filing describes, elaborating:
We intend to continue focusing on our digital currency initiative as the core of our future strategy and direction.
As of the end of September, the bank had total assets of $2.1 billion, total deposits of $1.8 billion, and total stockholders’ equity of $230.6 million.
Go-To Bank for Crypto Industry
Silvergate Bank began focusing on providing services to the crypto industry in 2013. Over the years, it has become a go-to bank for the industry. “We believe our first-mover advantage serving the digital currency industry has led to numerous strategic advantages, many of which are significant barriers to entry for potential competitors,” the bank explained.
According to its registration statement, the bank has 756 customers in the crypto industry as of the end of September. Among its customers, 69 are exchanges, 468 are institutional investors and the rest are other crypto companies such as mining operators and protocol developers. Its clients include Coinbase, Genesis, Bitstamp, Gemini, Sofi, Circle, Kraken, Bittrex, and Paxos.
The bank also revealed that approximately 77% of its eligible cryptocurrency-related customers are enrolled in the Silvergate Exchange Network (SEN), its proprietary payment network for the crypto industry. The system was developed and tested in 2017 and made available to all of the bank’s crypto customers in early 2018. “The core function of the SEN is to allow participants to make transfers of U.S. dollars from their SEN account at the bank to the bank account of another SEN participant with which a counterparty relationship has been established, and to view funds transfers received from their SEN counterparties,” the bank detailed, adding:
Because of our focus on the digital currency industry in recent years and the unique value-add solutions and services we provide, we have achieved improvements in our deposit base and significant growth in key operating metrics.
What do you think of crypto-friendly banks like Silvergate Bank? Let us know in the comments section below.
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Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Silvergate Bank.
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