The highly anticipated custody solution by financial services giant Fidelity Investments is said to be unveiled in March of this year, as reported by Bloomberg, who confirmed the sensitive information from people familiar with the matter.
Fidelity announced their foray into the cryptocurrency market back in October last year, and introduced Fidelity Digital Assets, with a focus on providing custody solutions to institutional investors. The financial services giant confirmed that Bitcoin [BTC], which currently holds over 53 percent of the global cryptocurrency market, will be the first virtual currency to get the custody service, followed by Ether [ETH], which comes second with under 10 percent global share.
In a statement, released on January 29, Fidelity said:
“We are currently serving a select set of eligible clients as we continue to build our initial solutions. Over the next several months, we will thoughtfully engage with and prioritize prospective clients based on needs, jurisdiction and other factors.”
Abigail Johnson, the CEO of Fidelity is a cryptocurrency proponent and has heralded the company’s initial steps into the decentralized industry. Fidelity revealed in October that it kept a watchful eye over the cryptocurrency realm for years and that it has been mining Bitcoin since 2015.
In addition to the custody solution, the fourth-largest asset management giant will also provide a trading-execution platform and around-the-clock advisory services to their institutional clients, through Fidelity Digital Assets.
State Street, another banking giant, has also shown interest in the cryptocurrency custody field but is hoping client demand will increase before formally entering the space.
Back in December, Jay Biancamano, a managing director for digital product development and innovation at State Street said that there is a “high level of interest” in the crypto-custody, but there’s no “urgency” from the financial giant to rush in as the market demand is still low.
Institutional investors are seen as the next frontier in the cryptocurrency world. Bakkt, the digital assets platform backed by NYSE and ICE is set to be launched this year, the Bitcoin ETF will be tabled before the SEC in March and Nasdaq is looking to launch their Bitcoin futures in the first half of 2019.
Crypto-specific custody solutions are already provided by mainstays like Coinbase and BitGo, but some users have said that the cost of the same is too high to warrant the service. Other new players could include traditional custody providers like Northern Trust and Nomura, who are planning on entering the cryptocurrency field with similar solutions.
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Bitcoin’s censorship resistance, freedom make it a game changer in the economic industry
Over the years, the global economic industry has witnessed significant changes. However, no change has been more significant or essential than the one introduced by the concept of virtual assets or Bitcoin. Today, Bitcoin and other virtual currencies are almost as essential as fiat money and despite the fact that digital assets have not reached worldwide adoption, the pace of growth has been substantial.
In a recent panel discussion, Jedidiah Taylor, CEO and Founder of Decent.Bet, the smart contract-based sports betting platform, stated that the idea of Bitcoin and blockchain technology projected a perspective of freedom and honesty which allowed individuals to have direct control over their own capital, without any oversight supervision from financial institutions.
The sentiment was followed by Nico De Jonghe, Founder and CEO of NDJ Investment Group, who added that the threat of decentralized assets loomed the largest over centralized institutions like banks, who were worried of the future prospects offered by Bitcoin and its impact on the long-term financial situation.
Tone Vays, a reputable analyst and Bitcoin proponent, opined and stated that Bitcoin’s biggest strength was the fact that it was completely “unconfiscatable” and that one’s BTC is completely safe if it is protected and secured with attention. The characteristic of censorship-resistant value transfer is also an absolute game-changer for Bitcoin, allowing it to competitively exist in the financial system.
The value of Bitcoin has often been criticized in the past, but its valuation has consistently proven its worth. In fact, Bitcoin has grown by more than 150 percent in 2019.
At press time, Bitcoin was priced at $11,371, with a market capitalization of over $202.18 billion. The staggering valuation of an asset that was unheard of 10 years ago, further underlines the potential of Bitcoin in the current market scenario and for the future economies.
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