Goldman Sachs Investing in Crypto Custodian BitGo

Siamak Masnavi

Goldman Sachs and Mike Novogratz' venture capital fund Galaxy Digital Ventures are investing in crypto custody solution provider BitGo Holdings.

Here is how BitGo, which calls itself "the market leader in institutional-grade cryptocurrency security", announced the news on Twitter:

And Mike Novogratz, the founder of Galaxy Digital, made the following tweet (note the #theherdiscoming hashtag, which refers to the flow of institutional money into crypto):

According to the press release, today, BitGo had the second close of its Series B funding round. The new investors, Goldman Sachs’ Principal Strategic Investments group and Galaxy Digital Ventures LLC, a VC firm founded by Michael Novogratz (a former partner at Goldman Sachs) are joining Valor Equity Partners, Craft Ventures, DRW, and Redpoint Ventures. The total amount raised in this round was $58.5 million. This funding will help to support BitGo’s research and development.

Mike Belshe, CEO of BitGo, said:

“This strategic investment from Goldman Sachs and Galaxy Digital Ventures validates both our market opportunity and unique position. No one is better positioned than BitGo to serve institutional investors who want to trade cryptocurrencies and digital assets. That’s why we’re focused on figuring out what it takes to secure a trillion dollars. The market’s not there yet but our job is to be ready first."

Rana Yared, a Managing Director of Goldman Sachs’ Principal Strategic Investments group, stated:

“Greater institutional participation in the digital asset markets requires secure and regulated custody solutions. We are impressed by BitGo’s product, unique services, and the management team. We view our investment in BitGo as an exciting opportunity to contribute to the evolution of this critical market infrastructure.”

And Michael Novogratz, Founder of Galaxy Digital Ventures LLC, had this to say:

“Institutional investors are gradually realizing that digital assets are going to be a game changer, and they want to participate. We have been impressed with BitGo’s world class team, their deep technical understanding of digital assets as well as their ability to deliver institutional-quality products to investors. Our team is excited to support BitGo as it enters into this next phase of growth.”

On 13 September 2018, as covered by CryptoGlobe, BitGo announced that it had become a "qualified custodian" by obtaining a South Dakota trust charter, which made it even more attractive to institutional investors.

BitGo's "BitGo Custody" solution for institutional investors offers:

  • 100% cold storage technology in bank-grade Class III vaults;
  • Support for storage of over 75 tokens and coins;
  • Institutional-grade policy controls (such as multiple signatures and spending limits);
  • Multi-user accounts; and
  • Most importantly, regulatory compliance (since BitGo Trust Company is a qualified custodian)

BitGo is the largest processor of on-chain bitcoin transactions, with 15% of all global bitcoin transactions, and $15 billion per month across all cryptocurrencies; it supports more than 95 coins and tokens; it holds more than $2 billion in assets in custody; and it is used by hundreds of exchanges across more than 50 countries.

Featured Image Courtesy of BitGo 

How SAFU Is Binance? Cybersecurity Firms FireEye and SlowMist May Have the Answer

On Friday (December 6), Binance reported the findings of security audits conducted by cybersecurity firms FireEye and SlowMist.

FireEye's Assessment

Binance's blog post says that California-based cybersecurity firm FireEye, Inc. has been helping to enhance Binance's network security since May 2019.

FireEye, which was founded in 2004, apparently has 8200+ customers in 103 countries, is used by 50% of the Forbes Global 2000, and has 3200+ employees worldwide.

In its most recent report on Binance, it says:

"Binance has invested heavily in information security, complete organization structure relating to information security, clearly defined responsibilities and standardized processes for day-to-day management & maintenance."

It goes on to add:

"What is worth mentioning here is the Binance approaches security incidents in a timely and transparent manner, which sets Binance apart from many other companies that elect to evade or conceal the problems out of consideration of their own interests. This attitude adopted by Binance toward the users shows that Binance is a company that is indeed responsible to the users, puts the interests of the users above all and takes security as its lifeline."

SlowMist's Assessment

As for Xiamen SlowMist Technology Co., Ltd. ("SlowMist"), a cybsersecurity firm headquartered in Xiamen, China, it seems as though it was founded by a team with members who have experience of previously working at Google, Microsoft, W3C, The Ministry of Public Security of the People's Republic of China, Tencent, Alibaba, and Baidu.

SlowMist used its Blockchain Threat Intelligence System (BTI) to prepare its latest safety monitoring report on Binance.

In this report, SlowMist says that it was first contacted by Binance in December 2018, and that since then it has "done a lot of security monitoring work for Binance."

It then goes to say:

"Binance’s production environment architecture, server security, application security, wallet private key security, office environment security and other important security projects are currently in high quality. At the same time, Binance’s risk control system is perfect and equipped with a number of measures to ensure the safety of user assets. SlowMist’s overall evaluation of Binance’s current security system is: Excellent."

Featured Image Courtesy of Binance