Fidelity launches crypto platform for institutional investors

Fidelity Investments is launching a new company for institutional clients that will trade and store cryptocurrency assets such as bitcoin and ethereum, the Boston-based investment giant announced.

Known as Fidelity Digital Asset, the new company will offer enterprise-quality custody and trade execution services for digital assets, commonly referred to as cryptocurrencies, to institutional investors as a first step towards creating a full platform for the nascent industry.

“Our goal is to make digitally-native assets, such as bitcoin, more accessible to investors,” Abigail Johnson, chairman and chief executive of Fidelity Investments, said in a statement.

“We expect to continue investing and experimenting, over the long-term, with ways to make this emerging asset class easier for our clients to understand and use.”

The new platform – born out of Fidelity Center for Applied Technology – will offer three main services: custody solutions, a cryptocurrency trading execution platform, and institutional advisory services 24/7 to fit in with blockchain’s always-on trading cycle.

It will not, however, set up an exchange to trade cryptocurrency assets, acting only was a platform to connect with a number of other crypto exchanges to help its clients quickly find the best price.

For now, its services are available to institutions such as hedge funds, endowments and family offices but not to the retail investor.

Fidelity Investments already provides financial services for $7.2trn in customer assets and clearing, custody and investment services for 13,000 institutional advisory firms and brokers.

Other crypto companies have debuted similar products, but Fidelity is the first Wall Street incumbent to officially provide cryptocurrency solutions such as custody, underscoring how some establishment players in the finance industry are attempting to profit from the wild west frontier of digital assets.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Pedro Gonçalves
Pedro Gonçalves is Financial Correspondent at International Investment.

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