Thailand’s oldest lender, Siam Commercial Bank Plc (SCBX) on Tuesday said it acquired a 51% stake in local digital asset exchange Bitkub for 17.85 billion baht.
The acquisition will “help the SCBX Group create new growth value in the long term amid a new financial world,” chief executive Arthid Nanthawithaya said in a statement.
The deal is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2022, pending regulatory approval.
“We needed to elevate Bitkub to the global level, so we turned to a strong partner like SCB to help us achieve our target faster and more sustainably,” said Bitkub founder and CEO, Jirayut Srupsrisopa.
SCBX, the country’s fourth-largest lender by assets, plans to restructure and grow its new business and financial technologies.
The move comes as other Thai banks and companies make inroads into digital assets.
In August, Bank of Ayudhya Plc was part of a $41 million investment round in Thai-based exchange, Zipmex, which counts Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s venture capital firm, B Capital Group as an investor.
Kasikornbank Plc earlier this year rolled out a service for digital token offerings.
Other companies like financial consultant, the Brooker Group Plc have made cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin a part of their investment strategy.