DFS chief Adrienne Harris explains how — and why — New York is speeding up the BitLicense pipeline

New York’s financial regulator is accelerating its work on crypto business licensing.

Speaking with The Block on May 19, Adrienne Harris, the superintendent of New York’s Department of Financial Services promoted her work on expanding the DFS’ licensing regime for crypto firms — famous under the moniker “BitLicense.”

“Before my coming into DFS, the average time was up to a couple of years. We’re already moving much much faster. We’ve done three licenses this year, soon to do a fourth, compared to one in all of 2021,” Harris said.

The one authorized in 2021 was Bakkt. Another BitLicensee, Xapo, gave up its license and left New York in January 2022, weeks before Harris’ confirmation.

The queue to get a BitLicense has been a longstanding grievance among the crypto industry, especially given New York’s status as the global f