The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) has granted Coinbase a virtual currency license (a lesser version of a money transmitters license specific to digital currency) to do business in the state.
"At Coinbase, our first priority is to ensure that we operate the most secure and compliant digital currency exchange in the world. We're thrilled to have obtained the BitLicense and look forward to expanding our business in New York." - Brian Armstrong, CEO, Coinbase
Nice for Coinbase to get some good news for a change given the ongoing battle with the Internal Revenue Service.
BitLicense IssuanceThis is only the third BitLicense awarded to any company thus far. Circle received the first license which is ironic. Many company joined an Exodus to escape New York and its BitLicense while Circle got the license and then Exodus'ed from virtual currency negating it's necessity.
Ripple, who was bitch-slapped by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) in 2015 to the tune of a $750,000 fine for various violations and $250,000 in confiscated funds, was awarded the second. Ripple obviously does need this license but doesn't deal in bitcoin, it has its own publicly traded token (XRP) of which its necessity is questionable, it is generated by Ripple in an unlimited supply and is not mined, and has little value.
Ripple says its used for it's Ripple network for a purpose that is not required but that is does help prevent spam.
Coinbase however, is a force in the Bitcoin and blockchain world and certainly is required to obtain one. There is little doubt the NYDFS went over that application carefully. Anyone want to guess their bond requirement?
Perhaps we can get Coinbase to chime in on that one. (hint...don't hold your breath)