October 28, 2020; Cheyenne, WY – The Wyoming State Banking Board today voted 8-0 to grant Avanti Bank & Trust a bank charter, the type of which gives Avanti the same powers as national banks in its approved business lines. Avanti’s approved business plan includes several products and services, including a tokenized U.S. dollar called Avit™*; custody services for digital assets as a “qualified custodian” under the Investment Advisers Act; API-based online banking services, where customer deposits must be 100% backed by reserves; and prime services for digital assets. Avanti plans to provide commercial accounts in early 2021 and other accounts with high minimum balance requirements soon thereafter.
“Avanti’s mission is to provide a compliant bridge between the traditional and digital asset financial systems, with the strictest level of institutional custody standards,” said Caitlin Long, Avanti’s founder and chief executive officer. “We will provide products and services that do not exist in the market today. Currently the only type of U.S. financial institution that can provide final and simultaneous settlement of trades between digital assets and the U.S. dollar—because it is the only type currently approved to handle both within the same legal entity—is a Wyoming special purpose depository institution like Avanti. Wyoming has the only U.S. regulator with a bank supervisory and regulatory program for digital assets that is near completion.”
Avanti’s approved products include the issuance of a tokenized U.S. dollar, Avit (rhymes with “have it”). Avit is designed to solve widely-acknowledged problems with legacy payment systems faced by traders, investors and corporate treasurers. Nicknamed the “stablecoin disruptor,” it is also designed to solve the legal, accounting and tax issues of stablecoins. “We need this product yesterday,” said the chief executive officer of one of Avanti’s likely initial customers, in describing Avit. Executed by a highly experienced and proven engineering team, Avanti plans to issue Avit initially on both Liquid (a sidechain of the Bitcoin blockchain, in coordination with Blockstream) and Ethereum, and will consider issuing Avit on other blockchains in the future based on customer demand and its assessment of network security.
As a bank, Avanti will fully comply with all applicable Bank Secrecy Act, anti-money laundering and OFAC-related laws, rules and regulations.