The world’s fourth-biggest asset manager, Fidelity Investments, who controls around $7.2 trillion in assets, has 27 million customers and provides investment services to around 13,000 institutional advisory firms and brokers, is launching a digital asset trading platform. The subsidiary, termed Fidelity Digital Assets, will provide a seamless cryptocurrency trading and custody experience 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The launch is expected to occur in early 2019. Tom Jessup, head of the newly established Fidelity subsidiary, says,
“In our conversations with institutions, they tell us that in order to engage with digital assets in a meaningful way, they need a trusted platform provider to enter this space. These institutions require a sophisticated level of service and security, equal to the experience they are used to when trading stocks or bonds”
Fidelity has plans to provide clients with geographically isolated, cold-storage solutions, giving the clients peace of mind that their digital assets are safe. This is essential to bringing blockchain and cryptocurrencies to the mainstream, helping indoctrinate within the minds of the hesitant that this technology can be a safe and legitimate way to store and transfer wealth.
Fidelity is no stranger to blockchain. They launched their own blockchain incubation branch in 2013, an initiative aimed at researching the potential for blockchain to improve upon Fidelity’s investment services. In 2018, they invested $2.5 billion into this branch. Katie Chase, head of the blockchain incubation branch says,
“It’s (blockchain) still very nascent. If you dig under the covers is still in the proof of concept stage. We tried to apply blockchain to some use cases where we learned a lot but the technology isn’t mature enough to solve these problems.”
This blockchain research group is in addition to the 2,600 Fidelity employee blockchain club called “bits and blocks”. My point being that Fidelity is clearly heavily interested and involved with blockchain tech and is really putting their money and resources where their research is.
Whenever big players like Fidelity and the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) are getting involved with something, you know it is massive. These are the types of institutions that dictate the very path and resulting future of finances in our world. Moves such as these speak volumes as to the growth, maturity and future path of the cryptocurrency and blockchain space. The best is yet to come.