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Nomura’s Crypto Subsidiary Laser Digital Opens Office in Japan

Laser Digital, the digital asset branch of financial powerhouse Nomura, has inaugurated a new office in Tokyo, marking its ambitions to fortify its foothold in the Far East.

Hideaki Kudo, formerly an executive director at Nomura, has been designated to lead this new Japanese office. Kudo’s prior roles at Nomura saw him helming multiple projects, notably the creation of security tokens for the Nomura Group. In addition, he played a key role as a senior portfolio manager at Nomura Asset Management, as highlighted in the company’s recent Monday announcement.

Speaking about Kudo’s appointment, Nomura’s co-founder Steven Ashley remarked, “Given Kudo-san’s deep insights from his tenure at the Digital Company, he is poised to play a pivotal role in Laser Digital’s trajectory and expansion. We are delighted to have him onboard.”

“In our quest to provide uninterrupted support for our trading endeavors, it was paramount for us to maintain a 24/7 operational framework. Hence, when considering a location in the Far East, Japan naturally emerged as our foremost choice,” the statement read.

This move by Laser Digital into the Asian domain comes on the heels of their announcement last week about securing a provisional license to commence operations in Dubai. Specifically, on September 26, the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), a renowned international financial enclave situated in Abu Dhabi, awarded Laser Digital the green light. This license empowers the firm to offer broker-dealer services in tandem with asset and fund management provisions, encompassing both digital and traditional asset classes.

However, details regarding the newly established Tokyo branch remain sparse, as Nomura has chosen to withhold further specifics at this juncture.

Last month witnessed a significant move from Nomura’s Laser Digital as they launched a novel fund aimed at granting institutional clientele exposure to Bitcoin (BTC). Christened the ‘Bitcoin Adoption Fund,’ it is structured to provide purely long-term exposure. This marks the initiation of what promises to be an array of digital asset investment offerings from Laser Digital’s portfolio.

Furthermore, the company disclosed that for the secure custody of client assets, they will utilize the services of Komainu. It’s noteworthy that Komainu is a collaborative venture involving Nomura, Ledger, and CoinShares.

Reflecting on the cryptocurrency landscape, Jez Mohideen, Laser Digital’s CEO, shared insights in a June interview with Financial News. He opined that the crystallizing regulatory framework in Asian regions, especially in markets like Japan and Hong Kong, is poised to invigorate retail involvement. This comes at a juncture when the digital asset industry has absorbed critical takeaways from setbacks experienced in the US.

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Cryptocurrency is essentially virtual money that operates in a decentralized manner, not through a bank but directly on multiple independent computers.

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