In March, South Africa’s financial conduct regulator approved 59 operating licences for crypto businesses but did not share the names of beneficiaries of the country’s first-ever crypto licences. 

On Monday afternoon, the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) approved 16 extra licences, bringing the number of licenced crypto companies to 75 from. The FSCA received 374 applications. 

Luno and VALR, two global crypto exchanges, are the most recognisable names on the list.

Luno’s license allows the company to provide crypto advisory and intermediary services while VALR’s license allows the company to provide advisory, intermediary and investment management services. 

Binance, one of the biggest global crypto exchanges, did not make the list. 

The move signals South Africa’s continuing acceptance of the crypto regulatory environment. And with the regulator expected to approve even more licences, it will position South Africa as one of the continent’s crypto-forward countries.

“Any entity that did not apply for a license and continues activities will be investigated and there will be consequences for such actions,” said Felicity Mabaso, the divisional executive for licensing at the FSCA.

The licensed entities will be subject to ongoing supervision after licensing, while investigations into people conducting crypto-related financial services without authorisation will begin.

The licences were granted to crypto companies with diverse business models, including advisory services, exchanges, payment gateways, crypto-to-crypto and crypto-to-fiat conversion, crypto asset arbitrage, tokenisation, provision of index-based products, and wallet services.

*This is a developing story

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