Crypto wallet and exchange giant Coinbase is gunning for big banks and other institutional investors, as the company aims to take cryptocurrency to the forefront of the mainstream financial world.
After opening a new office in New York, the company has announced plans to expand to 150 staff, as they pursue opportunities to bring more institutional capital into the cryptocurrency world.
Despite more sluggish performance in cryptocurrency markets in recent months, the firm, considered a cryptocurrency unicorn, says there has been no let up in demand from larger financial firms for getting involved.
For individual investors holding cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, an influx of institutional investors is seen as a holy grail, and an event that could spark another surge in prices in response to a significant uptick in demand.
For institutional investors, their interest in cryptocurrencies remains dampened by the requirements of regulators and institutional level safeguards – something Coinbase is now actively working to address.
The news that the firm intends to expand their New York operations will therefore be seen as a positive amongst both retail and institutional investors, with the potential to help drive further growth in the cryptocurrency markets.
Adam White, the general manager at Coinbase Institutional, said that far from deterring institutional money, recent trading conditions in crypto markets have actually seen consistent and growing interest from regulated institutions.
“When we saw the market begin to correct, which we all expected, institutions didn’t lose interest…It was exactly the opposite. They look at it as an opportunity to enter when things are not too frothy.”
“We have to create a bridge between financial services and technology. In order to do that, we need to pull from some of the best and brightest minds that have worked their whole careers in other kinds of traditional financial firms.”
The expansion comes at a time of rapid growth for Coinbase, with the firm now employing some 500 staff across offices worldwide.
With sights set on attracting more institutional money, few would bet against Coinbase succeeding in their efforts – and driving another wave of interest in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.