JP Morgan is planning to open a cryptocurrency lab in Athens, Greece. The announcement was made by the banking giant‘s decentralized finance platform Onyx‘s head, Tyrone Lobbam. Lobbam mentioned that building blockchain-related features to serve Onyx will be the initial priority of the new lab. The facility will also concentrate on data security and encryption.
According to Lobbam, the new lab will have four engineering positions. There will be two full-stack developers, a technical manager for the launch, and an engineer for mobile apps. The engineers will concentrate on three main topics: artificial intelligence, distributed ledger technology, and cryptography.
Apart from the lab development, JP Morgan has increased hiring for digital asset jobs. The bank’s Onyx blockchain division has about 15 available roles in New York, India, and Greece.
Why is JP Morgan making such cryptocurrency-friendly moves?
JP Morgan has adamantly opposed cryptocurrencies in the past. The bank’s CEO said that Bitcoin (BTC) was worthless in October 2021 and continued to express doubt about the industry. Nonetheless, the bank continues to invest in the area.
Most banks are entering the digital asset realm as a result of the increased popularity of digital assets. Moreover, clients of many major banks have begun demanding some exposure to the new asset class. It is possible that JP Morgan is entering the field, despite doubts, to cater to their clientele.
Furthermore, it is also possible that the bank was not aware of the industry in its entirety and has only begun to understand it recently. Regardless, the bank seems to be moving full-steam ahead with its digital asset plans.
Last month, JP Morgan examined the prospects for the popular exchange Coinbase. The bank claimed that the Ethereum Shanghai update might mark the start of a new era of staking for the company.