Fidelity Investments Staffing up to Launch Crypto Exchange: Report

  • US investment giant Fidelity Investments is reportedly looking to launch its own cryptocurrency exchange
  • This according to job postings the firm sent its employees, whichreveal it's looking for staff that can help it launch the platform.

US investment giant Fidelity Investments is reportedly looking for talent to help it launch a cryptocurrency exchange that will allow its clients to “buy and sell certain digital assets.” Sources familiar with the matter purportedly revealed the firm has been working on the project for over a year.

According to Business Insider the wealth firm, which manages over $2.5 trillion in assets, has sent employees job postings that reveal it is looking for a DevOps system engineer to “help engineer, create, and deploy a Digital Asset exchange to both a public and private cloud.”

Moreover, the company is looking to staff up its crypto division, the Fidelity Digital Asset Services unit, with workers that can develop a “first-in-class custodian services for Bitcoin and other digital currencies.”

The report cites unnamed sources said to be familiar with Fidelity’s crypto ambitions. While right now Coinbase users can use Fidelity’s platform to check their portfolios alongside other investments, the move would likely see Fidelity directly hold cryptocurrencies.

While launching a cryptocurrency exchange would be one of the biggest moves a prominent Wall Street firm has made into the crypto market, it would put Fidelity Investments in competition with other industry giants, including Coinbase, investment app Robinhood, and Goldman Sachs-backed Circle, which recently acquired Poloniex for $400 million.

At press time, it isn’t clear whether Fidelity Investments’ new cryptocurrency exchange would be available on the firm’s main platform, or whether it would be launched as a separate entity. Similarly, there’s no available information on when it’s set to be launched.

According to Dave Weisberger, a market structure specialist, Fidelity’s move may be a smart one, as it will help legitimize the market and would strategically make sense. He said:

"They have many of the components already: a significant retail footprint across the spectrum of active to less active traders, a prime brokerage area that knows how to account for custody of assets, they operate an ATS already (called 'CrossStream'), and have a reputation for excellence and risk control in their product offerings.”

Dave Weisberger

It’s worth noting Fidelity Investments’ chief executive officer, Abigail Johnson, is a well-known bitcoiner. Last year, she revealed the company internally experimented with cryptocurrencies, and even launched a small mining operation that was “actually making a lot of money,” despite only being there for educational purposes.

At the time, Johnson revealed she is a “believer,” and that she was one of the few “from a large financial services company that has not given up on digital currencies.” The company’s charitable wing, Fidelity Charitable, raised over $22 million in bitcoin last year. At press time, it still allows philanthropists to donate using the flagship cryptocurrency.

Blockchain Wallet Integrates BitPay Support for User-Friendly Transactions

  • Blockchain Wallet announces the integration of BitPay into their existing service. 
  • Emphasis on allowing for "user-friendly" transactions and payments. 

Popular cryptocurrency firm Blockchain.com, which operates the Blockchjain wallet, has announced integration of payment processor BitPay

Blockchain Wallet Adds BitPay Support

In an update, Blockchain Wallet confirmed its new partnership with BitPay, which will allow for the direct spending of user bitcoin in an effort to increase the ease of crypto-based payments.

The press release states that BitPay has been “seamlessly” integrated into the existing Blockchain Wallet framework, which clients can use to make payments directly from their application. 

According to the announcement,

As the largest global crypto payments provider, BitPay and has processed more than $2.8 billion from merchants and B2B customers since 2011.

The press release continues, 

We’re excited to see this new addition connect our Wallet users to the world of merchants that accept Bitcoin (and soon other cryptos) as a payment method — one of the key ways to interact with and grow the digital asset ecosystem.

The emphasis on payments shows the direction that Blockchain Wallet imagines for the future of crypto. While the platform has created a secure cryptocurrency wallet for users to retain simultaneous control over their funds and private keys, user-friendly transactions and spending has continued to be a work in progress. 

BitPay has emerged as one of the more successful payment platforms in crypto, with a focus on establishing a relationship with merchants to accept bitcoin. The partnership with Blockchain Wallet, with its reported 41 million userbase, could go a long way in spurring greater use for bitcoin outside of a store of value asset or token for price speculation.