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Written by Cyndie Martini
on May 17, 2022

Providing cryptocurrency-related products and services to your customers is a complex task. For credit unions that have fewer resources than larger financial institutions, the option to offer crypto simply isn't available for most. Even for larger financial institutions, there are a number of hurdles to overcome. Many of them are regulatory-related.

On top of regulations, various crypto service offerings need to be considered. These include:

  • KYC/AML
  • Transaction monitoring
  • Order processing
  • Custody
  • Customer access to crypto exchanges 
  • Customer access to crypto payment services
  • DeFi integrations
  • Customer service
  • Web/app user interface build out
  • Security

The above is not exhaustive and will require a team dedicated to building and running the service. An age-old solution for such problems is to outsource. This requires hiring costly outside consultants that specialize in these services. 

With the arrival of fintechs, financial institutions can outsource almost any financial service through software services. This is known as X-as-a-Service, where the X is the particular service you want to outsource.

Crypto-as-a-Service (CaaS) is fairly unknown in the US, which is why you might not have heard of it. Unlike in the US, companies in the UK offer CaaS since they have fewer financial regulations.

While using CaaS can be less costly and resource-intensive than hiring an in-house team or consultants, it still requires knowledge of the crypto space. CaaS providers should be able to help with filling in any blanks or getting you up to speed.

When evaluating CaaS providers, there are a few things to look for. First, scope the work based on what your firm needs. Then you have a clear starting point. Next, does the CaaS offer the number of cryptocurrencies and marketplaces you're interested in? Will they provide a user interface, or do they expect you to build it?

As you learn more about what your customers want and what's needed, plus speaking to CaaS providers, the scope of work will become more clear. This will allow you to create cost projections, a timeline, and understand what exactly is necessary based on the final goal.

 

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