Coinbase Opens New Office in Ireland Ahead of Brexit
The imminent threat of Brexit is forcing cryptocurrency exchanges to consider relocating. In preparation for when the UK leaves the European Union, cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, which currently has its main EU office in London, has opened a new office in Ireland. The US digital currency made the announcement this week that their new office will be based in Dublin.
Coinbase is a San-Francisco-based firm which was established in 2012 and has over 500 employers worldwide. With offices in San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Portland, Tokyo and London, the exchange supports five assets on its consumer app: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic and Litecoin.
Coinbase became available to European customers in 2014 and is now used in 33 countries, with the new ZRX is expected to be added to the app soon. The company opened its London office in May 2017 as its European headquarters but plans to use its new Dublin office as part of its contingency plan if Britain leaves the EU. As well as helping Coinbase expand its operations in Europe, the Dublin team will take on a range of new business-related functions, and it is hoping that the move will help to expand the Emerald Isle’s crypto economy.
The Irish Minister for Financial Services and Insurance Michael D’Arcy commented:
“I am delighted that Coinbase is opening an office in Dublin. This decision highlights the competitive offering and attractiveness of Ireland for financial services.”
Zeeshan Feroz, the chief executive officer at Coinbase UK, said that the new Irish office would allow the company to continue to serve its clients in the EU if the UK do finally leave. He also added that the company is looking forward to making the most of the high calibre personnel in Ireland.
“It is also a plan B for Brexit. As we plan for all eventualities, it’s important that we continue servicing our customers across Europe, and Ireland would be our preferred choice there if it comes to it.”
If Brexit does happen, the UK and EU have decided to the border between the Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland open. However, Britain does intend to exit the EU Customs Union. British finance minister Philip Hammond is optimistic that blockchain technology could actually help to ensure smooth trading conditions between the UK and EU in the event of Brexit as it enables the transparent recording of product movement whilst removing the need for border inspections.
Dublin was an obvious choice for Coinbase’s second European office as it is an English-speaking EU member state with a highly skilled talent pool, entrepreneurial spirit, and thirst for technological innovation. With a presence in Tokyo as well, the new Dublin office will be the start-up’s third office outside of America.
Coinbase witnessed a rush in users during a rally in cryptocurrency prices late last year. By October 2017, it had amassed 11.7 million users, which equates to an increase of almost 150 percent from the previous year. Just one month later, the start-up had gained an extra 1.6 million users, raising its total number of users to 13.3 million.
Back in August, Brian Armstrong, Coinbase’s Chief Executive, reported that the company was growing by 50,000 customers every day in 2017, and at the start of this month, technology news website Recode said the firm was looking to raise up to $500 million in investment from Tiger Global and other investors, which would value the company at a cool $8 billion. So, it is no wonder Ireland is welcoming Coinbase with open arms.
By Joy Lewis.