BlockFi Looks to Tap Institutional Market With New Platform

BlockFi launched BlockFi Prime as more institutional investors show an interest in crypto.

Jun 10, 2021 at 4:33 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 1:09 p.m. UTC

Cryptocurrency lender BlockFi said Thursday it is launching BlockFi Prime, a trading platform for institutional investors and high-net-worth clients.

The service, which will feature real-time quotes and 24-hour delayed settlement, will be available to asset managers, family offices, high-net worth individuals, hedge funds, private equity firms and corporate entities. The company expects to add capabilities for margin trading, automated margin lending, and derivatives to the service “in the coming months,” according to a company press release.

The move comes on the heels of increased interest in crypto markets from institutional investors, dating back to the past year. BlockFi joins competitors Coinbase, Genesis Trading and others in offering a ‘Prime’ service. (Genesis is owned by CoinDesk parent DCG.)

“Our clients were asking us for this and the reason that they’re asking is because we have essentially the largest balance sheet among the new breed of digital-finance firms,” said David Olsson, vice president and global head of Institutional Distribution at BlockFi, according to Bloomberg. “The way that we’ve set up the business from Day One, more than any other of the new digital fintechs out there, we were built to serve institutions.”

Just days ago, BlockFi was reported to be in discussions to raise “several hundred million dollars at a valuation near $5 billion,” according to a report in The Information. The company raised a $350 million Series D at a $3 billion valuation in March.

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