Genesis Global Trading Inc., a big institutional market maker for digital currencies, has started a lending business.
The new subsidiary, Genesis Global Capital, will allow investors and businesses to borrow cryptocurrencies in quantities of $100,000 or more for fixed terms ranging from two weeks to six months. Loans will be issued in bitcoin, ether, ether classic, XRP, bitcoin cash and zcash among others.
"We believe now is a great time to offer an institutional-focused lending service because it will increase general liquidity in the marketplace, encourage new financial institutions to participate in a two-sided market and increase the working capital that companies use to scale their digital currency-centric businesses," Genesis Capital said in a press release.
The company suggests that investors could use its lending capacity to "hedge total portfolio risk or take speculative short positions," but it also envisions other use cases for the service.
One such example, the company explained in the statement, could be remittance companies that "need to make immediate settlements to their customers, but don't want to buy a large balance of bitcoin and hold that risk on their books."
Genesis Capital has already attracted notable clients such as BlockTower Capital, an existing client of the parent trading company, and DV Chain, a crypto trading firm.
"The majority of trading volume in several cryptocurrencies is denominated in bitcoin, which has created a need for a bitcoin lending market," DV Chain CEO Garrett SEE told CNBC.
Genesis' move into crypto lending is the latest addition of institutional services in a market that has also recently seen the launch of bitcoin futures trading and increased interest in bitcoin exchange-traded funds.
Disclosure: CoinDesk is a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which has ownership stake in Genesis.
Exchange of money image via Shutterstock