NEW YORK, Oct. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Gemini Trust Company, LLC (Gemini) -- a next generation bitcoin exchange founded by brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss -- announced its launch today following the receipt of its Authorization Certificate from the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS), which allows it to operate as a chartered limited liability trust company. Gemini has begun onboarding customers and will officially open for trading on Thursday October 8th at 9:30am, at which point customers will be able to buy and sell bitcoin for fiat currency. Gemini is a fiduciary and is uniquely permitted to accept and service both individual and institutional customers.
Gemini will custody all bitcoin deposits, the majority of which will be held in its offline (i.e., air-gapped), multi-signature, geographically-distributed cold storage system. All fiat currency transferred to Gemini will be deposited in a New York State chartered bank, headquartered in midtown Manhattan, and eligible for Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) insurance, subject to applicable limitations.
The Gemini team is comprised of security experts and top financial engineers who have previously worked at premier firms including Virtu Financial, TwoSigma, Bridgewater Associates, Google, Microsoft, AirBnB and more.
"Our position from day one was to ask for permission, not forgiveness. We worked very hard over the past year to obtain a limited liability trust company charter by meeting the high-water mark of banking compliance," said Cameron Winklevoss, President of Gemini. "Similar to other premier financial institutions Gemini is safe and compliant. In addition, we've built Gemini with a security-first mentality from day one."
"Bitcoin is an island right now and Gemini is building a bridge to the financial mainland. Gemini is simple and easy-to-use for a first-time bitcoin buyer while at the same time powerful enough and feature-complete for a professional trader," said Tyler Winklevoss, Chief Executive Officer of Gemini. "We didn't apply for a BitLicense because we wanted to build an exchange that both Main Street and Wall Street could use and trust, so we decided to obtain a limited liability trust company charter in order to do so. Even though this path was more costly and time-consuming, it was necessary to fulfill our goal of serving institutional customers."
Gemini's launch caps a lengthy regulatory approval process that began in early 2014 and required Gemini to demonstrate a robust Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Program, strong internal controls and procedures, a comprehensive security program and significant capital reserves. In addition, Gemini has built its own proprietary cold storage vaulting system to custody bitcoin and requires all users to use two-factor authentication when using the platform and performing certain actions.
Transfers to and withdrawals from Gemini are free; a nominal trading fee applies to both the buyer and seller, which is currently set at 25 basis points of the value of a trade. Gemini offers an application programming interface (API) for customers who wish to connect and trade programmatically.
As a limited liability trust company, Gemini will maintain significant capital reserves consistent with that of a premier fiduciary business, have audited financials prepared by a top tier certified public accounting firm and is subject to regulation and inspection by the New York State Department of Financial Services. A Kaye Scholer LLP team, led by partner Evan L. Greebel, advised Gemini on its formation and launch.
About Gemini Trust Company, LLC
Gemini Trust Company, LLC (Gemini) is a New York State limited liability trust company founded by brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. On October 2nd, 2015, Gemini received its Authorization Certificate for a limited liability trust company from the New York State Department of Financial Services. Gemini is a fiduciary and is uniquely capable of accepting and servicing both individual and institutional customers who want to buy or sell bitcoin for fiat currency. Customer fiat currency is deposited in a New York State chartered bank and eligible for FDIC insurance, subject to applicable limitations. Winklevoss Capital is the sole investor in Gemini. For more information, visit Gemini.com
SOURCE Gemini Trust Company, LLC