Coinbase Launches Several New Institutional Grade Products and Services

  • Coinbase has launched several new products/services to unlock the billions of dollars in institutional money currently sitting on the sidelines.
  • There are four new offerings: "Coinbase Custody", "Coinbase Markets", "Coinbase Prime", and "Coinbase Institutional Coverage Group".

Coinbase, which operates the largest crypto exchange in United States, has unveiled several institutional grade new products and services in order to tempt the world's largest financial institutions to get into the cryptocurrency market.

Coinbase Custody

According to the Coinbase CEO, Brian Armstrong, an increasing number institutional investors are becoming interested in trading (or investing in) digital assets -- he estimates that around $10 billion in institutional money is sitting on the sidelines, waiting to be unlocked -- and that they are saying that the biggest barrier to entry for them is the lack of a digital asset custodian service that they can trust. And based on what Coinbase has just announced, Coinbase Custody should be a pretty good answer to this problem.

Coinbase Custody, which is being launched in partnership with a SEC-regulated broker-dealer, has the following features:

  • strict financial controls: "support for multiple signers, audit trails, segregation of duties, whitelisting IPs, and the ability to set withdrawal limits";
  • dedicated phone support: for confirming fund transfers and changes to accounts;
  • SLAs on fund transfers;
  • multi user accounts (with separate permissions);
  • support for all major coins and tokens;
  • regular (cyber and physical) security audits by external firms.

This service is only available to institutional investors with a minimum of $10M in deposits. As for the price, there is an initial setup fee of $100,000 USD, and a fee of 10 basis points per month on assets under custody.

Coinbase Markets

Coinbase Markets already provides "a centralized pool of liquidity for all Coinbase products." Coinbase is planning to improve this service by opening an engineering office in Chicago. Over the course of the year, Coinbase will be introducing new features such as "low latency performance, on-premise datacenter colocation services, institutional connectivity and access, and settlement and clearing services." Essentially, what Coinbase will be doing via this office is upgrading its systems so that it can become one of the first crypto exchanges that supports high frequency trading (HFT). HFT requires "low latency performance" or extremely fast processing times (think microseconds rather seconds). "On-premise datacenter colocation" means that HFT firms will be able to put their servers next to Coinbase's servers to minimize the delay associated with sending data between the HFT firm and the exchange. These improvements should benefit clients in the form of reduced bid-ask spreads. 

According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Adam White, the General Manager at Coinbase, told them in an interview that Coinbase would ensure that HFT firms would not receive any unfair advantages: "We are going to be thoughtful and deliberate in the way we do that, to make sure we don’t disadvantage any market participant over another."

Coinbase Prime

This is a brand new online interface to Coinbase's trading platform. It will provide a variety of tools and services designed to meet the trading needs of the institutional investor. During the coming months, Coinbase will be offering "lending and margin financing products to qualified clients, high touch and low touch execution services like over-the-counter (OTC) trading and algorithmic orders, and new market data and research products" as well as platform improvements such as "multi-user permissions and whitelisted withdrawal addresses."

Here is a screenshot that should give you an idea of what the Coinbase Prime interface looks like:

coinbase prime.png

Coinbase Institutional Coverage Group

This is a new group, based in Coinbase's New York City office, that will be focused on providing a personalized "white glove" service to institutional investors. The basic idea is to guide these investors through the onboading process and provide them with any help they need (for example, advising them on trading strategies) for navigating "the increasingly complex world of cryptocurrency investing." 


Feature Image Credit: "Wall Street Sign" by "EllenTheMelon1" via Flickr; licensed under "CC BY-SA 2.0"

Kanye Says He Wants to Run for President, Bitcoin Fan Elon Musk Endorses Him

Siamak Masnavi

American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, composer, entrepreneur and fashion designer Kanye West celebrated July 4, U.S. Independence Day, by announcing his intention to run for U.S. president in 2020.

So how did Kanye launch his bid to be on the ballot at the 2020 United States Presidential Election, which is scheduled for 3 November 2020?

Well, late on Saturday afternoon (California team), Kanye sent out the following tweet:

Minutes later, came this endorsement from Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, who has often expressed his interest in cryptocurrency in general and Bitcoin in particular:

Not wanting to be left out of the conversation, a couple of hours, American media personality, businesswoman, socialite, model, musician, and actress Paris Hilton made it clear that she would not mind being U.S. president either:

As FOX News reported a short time ago, this is not the first time that Kanye has expressed his intention to become U.S. president.

Apparently, back in November 2019, at the fifth annual Fast Company Innovation Festival in New York City, he said that he planned to run for U.S. president in 2024:

"When I run for president in 2024, we're going to definitely -- yo, whatchu [sic] all laughing at? When I run for president in 2024, we would've created so many jobs that, in fact, I'm going to walk...

"What I'm saying is, when y'all read the headlines, 'Kanye's crazy,' this and that, this and that, it's like one in three African-Americans are in jail and all of the celebrities are in jail also because they can't say nothing [sic]! They've got no opinion! They're so scared!"

According to the U.S. Constitution, here are the requirements for presidential candidates:

  • be a natural-born U.S. citiizen
  • be at least 35 years old
  • be a U.S. resident for at least 14 years

Since Kanye meets all these requirements, he is allowed to declare his candidacy for president. After he has raised or spent more than $5,000 for his campaign, he must register with the Federal Election Commission.

In May 2018, Kanye talked about Bitcoin during an interview with American radio presenter "Charlamagne tha God". 

He said:

"When you're acting in love, you're like a drop of water and you have the ocean as your army. When you act in fear, it's just you and your money.

"Now you can take your money and put it in Bitcoin, put it in credit form, put it in cash... and then stand up to the ocean and who's gonna win? 

"We definitely are dealing with racism but I want to push future concepts, you know.

"Now I'm doing I'm giving you two streams of consciousness in one. I want to talk about my wife. I also want to talk about Harriet Tubman on the twenty dollar bill... That's the moment I wanted to use Bitcoin."