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Tether’s bank partner Britannia sued over $1B deposit: Report

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Tether’s bank partner Britannia Financial is reportedly facing a lawsuit over claims it failed to pay the full price of revenue-generating assets allegedly related to a large deposit from Tether.

Arbitral International, a company registered in the British Virgin Islands, has sued Britannia over a $1 billion deposit from Tether, the Financial Times reported on Nov. 21, citing court documents filed in the High Court of Justice in London in 2023.

The lawsuit relates to Britannia’s acquisition of Arbitral’s Bahamas-based brokerage business known as Arbitral Securities. Britannia announced the acquisition in October 2021, integrating the brokerage into its own brokerage, Britannia Securities.

According to the new report, Britannia and Arbitral agreed that Britannia Financial would pay an extra sum based on the number of revenue-generating assets the Arbitral Securities held a year after the sale. The agreement reportedly stipulated this would include the clients originally introduced by Arbitral or related parties.

Citing the court filings, the report said that Tether opened an account with a subsidiary of Britannia Financial in November 2021.

Britannia Financial was reportedly introduced to Tether by Aldo Mazzella, who is described as a “professional introducer” and someone believed to have had a commercial relationship with Tether since around 2017. On the other hand, Arbitral argued that an executive at Arbitral Securities also played a role in the Britannia-Tether partnership.

The news comes a few months after Bloomberg reported that Tether added Britannia Bank and Trust as a Bahamas-based private bank to process dollar transfers on its platform. Other banking partners reportedly included Deltec Bank and Capital Union Bank.

Tether chief technology officer and new CEO Paolo Ardoino reportedly previously claimed that the stablecoin firm had strong relations with more than seven banks.

Tether and Britannia Financial did not immediately respond to Cointelegraph’s request for comment.

Related: Tether freezes $225M in USDT linked to romance scammers amid DOJ investigation

Tether’s (USDT) stablecoin has been steadily gaining momentum on the market and inching toward a $90 billion market capitalization, according to data from CoinGecko. On Nov. 20, USDT’s value hit another new high at $88 billion, up 33% since the beginning of 2023.

USDT market capitalization since January 2023. Source: CoinGecko

According to Tether, USDT added more than $20 billion to its market cap in 2023 due to two key factors, including continued market excitement around the possible approval of a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund. Tether’s record-breaking growth has also been fuelled by growing demand in emerging markets like Brazil, according to the firm.

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