On Tuesday, Five Star Bank, which is a subsidiary of Financial Institutions, Inc. (NASDAQ:FISI), announced a new partnership with NYDIG, through which it will “become one of the first financial institutions in the U.S. to enable its banking clients to securely buy, sell and hold bitcoin.”
Five Star Bank is “a $5 billion community bank offering a wide range of consumer and commercial banking and lending services to individuals, municipalities, and businesses through a network of approximately 50 locations.”
NYDIG is “a subsidiary of Stone Ridge, a holding company that has led the creation of forward-thinking firms across the worlds of technology and finance, including a $12B+ alternatives asset manager.” It provides “Bitcoin products across industries, from banking and insurance to fintech and nonprofits.”
The press release went on to say that the bank will “enable customers to transact bitcoin securely through its banking mobile app and online banking platform, and will help them overcome barriers to adoption such as crypto wallets and key management, which are often traditionally done through unregulated entities. The bank’s account holders are “anticipated to be eligible to transact bitcoin seamlessly and securely by the end of the second quarter.”
Martin K. Birmingham, CEO of Five Star Bank, had this to say:
“We are thrilled to introduce a new—and trusted—digital banking option for customers to effortlessly acquire, sell, hold, and manage bitcoin alongside their traditional financial assets.
“Thanks to NYDIG, we are creating a safe, efficient, and more user-friendly way for our customers to manage their digital transactions. Customer experience continues to be at the forefront of our focus at Five Star Bank, and we’re proud to bring forth a crypto currency investment solution that will broaden access to this emerging portfolio option for consumers within our geographic footprint and, frankly, across the country.“
Sean Willett, chief administrative officer of Five Star Bank, stated:
“We knew it was in the best interest of our customers to build upon our digital service menu in a way that better supports their interests, including an investment appetite for cryptocurrency. This is an area of the market that we have all seen grow exponentially over the last several years.
“Some early investors have jumped into crypto headfirst, while most consumers have expressed an interest in a more secure and reliable way to transact bitcoin. We’re proud to be a part of that solution and view our partnership with NYDIG to be just one of many upcoming technology and banking-as-a-service innovations that will drive Five Star Bank forward.“