Digital Asset News Round-Up – Goldman Sachs Offers Bitcoin Product, Andressen Horowitz Invests $1 Billion

Every week the Two Prime team keeps track of the biggest institutional news in digital assets. Below we’ve highlighted some of the most impactful news stories of the last week.

Goldman Sachs Offers Bitcoin Product

 

Goldman Sachs announced today that it has opened up trading with non-deliverable forwards, a derivative tied to Bitcoin’s price that pays out in cash. The company is protecting itself by hedging with CME, using Cumberland DRW as its trading partner.

“Institutional demand continues to grow significantly in this space, and being able to work with partners like Cumberland will help us expand our capabilities,” said Max Minton, Goldman’s Asia-Pacific head of digital assets. The new offering is “paving the way for us to evolve our nascent cash-settled crypto-currency capabilities.”

 

Stone Ridge and NYDIG Team Up to enable U.S. Bank Customers to Buy, Hold, and Sell Bitcoin

 

Stone Ridge subsidiary and crypto custody firm NYDIG announced a partnership with Fidelity National Information Services (FIS) yesterday to enable customers of U.S. banks to buy, hold, and sell bitcoin through their existing accounts. The partnership will enable NYDIG to manage bitcoin transactions for banks while FIS, via its Digital One Mobile tool, offers the digital experience element. 

Robert Gutmann, co-founder, and CEO of NYDIG, explained the move saying, “While bitcoin adoption is increasing, and accessibility and credibility gap remains for too many who want to buy, sell and hold. Our partnership with FIS and their core banking clients bridge this gap. Working with an innovative leader like FIS on this integration will usher in a new age of financial freedom, choice, and trust for consumers with their existing banks. We welcome FIS as an investor, and we are deeply excited about how our partnership can elevate banks across the country.”

 

Institutional Adoption of Ethereum driving ETH prices past all-time highs

 

Ethereum is up more than 50% in the past week, now worth well over $3000. The growth is being driven by the increase in institutional adoption and use cases for ethereum. According to the Financial Times, Coinbase now has more than $122 billion institutional capital on its platform, up from $45 billion at the end of 2020.

Yesterday morning, Galaxy Digital announced an agreement to purchase BitGo, an independent digital assets infrastructure provider, for $1.2B in cash and stock.

Mike Novogratz, CEO and Founder of Galaxy Digital, said, “The acquisition of BitGo establishes Galaxy Digital as a one-stop shop for institutions and significantly accelerates our mission to institutionalize digital asset ecosystems and blockchain technology.”

 

Coinbase Adds to Analytics Provider to its Portfolio

 

On Friday, April 30th, Coinbase announced plans to acquire data and analytics provider Skew in its first acquisition deal since its direct listing earlier this month. The new acquisition will help customers make more informed trading decisions using real-time data analytics and help Coinbase better serve institutional customers.

A representative from Skew commented, “We have not only developed a strong, positive relationship with the Coinbase team but have witnessed first-hand their impressive product-led culture, focus on compliance and commitment to the institutional space.”

 

Andressen Horowitz Invests $1 Billion into Crypto Startups

 

Andreessen Horowitz, the Menlo Park titan, recently announced that it aims to raise up to $1 billion to back crypto startups, and other VCs are set to follow.

According to Alexa von Tobel, managing partner of Inspired Capital, “The fervor right now that you’re feeling is coming from big institutional pools of capital moving into crypto. I think that will only continue.”

On Tuesday, S&P Dow Jones Indices announced the launch of three new cryptocurrency indices to measure the performance of bitcoin and ethereum. S&P Bitcoin Index (SPBTC) will track the performance of bitcoin, S&P Ethereum Index (SPETH) will measure the performance of ethereum, and S&P Cryptocurrency MegaCap Index (SPCMC) will measure the performance of bitcoin and ethereum digital assets weighted by market cap.

“Traditional financial markets and digital assets are no longer mutually exclusive markets. As cryptocurrency becomes more mainstream, investors now have access to reliable and transparent benchmarks backed by institutional quality pricing data,” Peter Roffman, Global Head of Innovation and Strategy, S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement.