State Street, Copper End Licensing Agreement; Orca Blocks US Traders

Today’s crypto news includes the end of a partnership and reduced access to an exchange.

Global custody bank State Street and crypto custody firm Copper have ended their licensing agreement, CoinDesk reported Thursday (March 16).

The two companies mutually decided to do so and will continue to build on their digital strategies separately, according to a statement provided to PYMNTS by State Street.

“Over the past few years, State Street has built a knowledgeable and experienced team within State Street Digital and engaged with a number of vendors and partners, including Copper,” the statement said. “This experience, as well as feedback from our clients on their aspirations in the digital space, has reinforced our focus towards the creation of a multi-faceted solution for both tokenized securities as well as native tokens.”

The statement also noted that both the regulatory environment and the requirements for servicing digital assets are evolving.

Copper did not immediately reply to PYMNTS’ request for comment.

The announcement comes on the same day Copper announced a strategic realignment in which it will focus on its custody and prime services solutions.

The firm will also shut down its software and infrastructure development division that focused on solutions for banks and funds, and will cut an unspecified number of jobs, CoinDesk reported Thursday.

“Copper remains on course to be the best supplier of digital asset custody and prime services that meet the needs of institutional investors,” Copper CEO Dmitry Tokarev said in a Thursday press release. “But now marks the time to reevaluate our business strategy and redouble our efforts on further growing the areas where we can build maximum success to transform existing financial infrastructure.”

In other news, crypto exchange Orca announced that it will block U.S. traders from trading coins on its site, beginning on March 31.

“Orca will be adding the United States to the regions and countries which are restricted from trading on effective March 31, 2023,” the company said in an update on its website. “This will not impact the ability of U.S. users to directly interact with Orca’s smart contract or SDK, nor will it impact their ability to provide liquidity through”

Orca is the top decentralized exchange on the Solana blockchain, had a trading volume of $280 million over the last week and pools liquidity from its users to keep trades flowing, CoinDesk reported Thursday.