Financial services provider Fidelity Investments is launching a cryptocurrency trading and storage platform.
Fidelity Digital Asset Services, LLC will provide cryptocurrency custody and trading services for enterprise clients, the company announced Monday.
Tom Jessup, who is heading up the new division, announced the platform at Bloomberg's Institutional Crypto event. It hopes to draw institutional investors, including hedge funds, family offices and market intermediaries.
Fidelity is one of the five largest financial services providers in the world, maintaining some $7.2 trillion in client assets.
"Those efforts have been successful in helping us understand and advance our thinking around cryptocurrencies ... The creation of Fidelity Digital Assets is the first step in a long-term vision to create a full-service enterprise-grade platform for digital assets," he said, going on to add:
"In our conversations with institutions, they tell us that in order to engage with digital assets in a meaningful way, they need a trusted platform provider to enter this space. These institutions require a sophisticated level of service and security, equal to the experience they're used to when trading stocks or bonds."
As such, Fidelity plans to build a "scalable infrastructure" that takes advantage of Fidelity's existing experience in building such platforms, he said.
At launch, the new company will offer "institutional-grade custody," trade execution and "dedicated client service," the press release continued.
The platform will custody bitcoin, ethereum and other yet-to-be-named cryptocurrencies at launch. As part of its security system, Fidelity will hold the cryptocurrencies in cold storage, along with "multi-level physical and cyber controls," the release explained.
Fidelity Investments CEO and chairman Abigail Johnson said the new platform's goal is to "make digitally-native assets, such as bitcoin, more accessible to investors," according to the release.
Image via Conensus
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.