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Nasdaq Plans to Launch a Crypto Custody Platform This Year: Report

Nasdaq Inc., the company behind the giant namesake stock market exchange, is seeking to launch its digital asset custody platform in Q2 2023, Bloomberg reported Friday. The group is pushing ahead with preparations, marking another push by traditional finance (TradFi) institutions to address the gap left by many bankruptcies in the crypto industry.

Nasdaq Sees Opportunity in Crypto After a Spate of Bankruptcies

According to Bloomberg, stock exchange operator Nasdaq Inc. expects to roll out custody services for digital assets by the end of Q2 2023. The group, which operates the second-biggest stock market exchange in the world, will join TradFi firms like BNY and Fidelity in providing crypto custody services.

Ira Auerbach, senior vice president and chief of Nasdaq Digital Assets, said the group is pressing forward with securing all required technical infrastructure and regulatory approvals. The company also applied to the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) to acquire a limited-purpose trust company charter, which would be in control of the new custody business.

The decision comes in the wake of a turbulent period in the digital assets industry involving a series of bankruptcies of high-profile firms such as crypto exchange FTX, Celsius Network, and Genesis, among others. Further, the industry lost two key institutions in the crypto banking ecosystem this month after Silvergate Capital and Signature Bank also shut down operations.

While these collapses significantly disrupted the industry and weighed on crypto prices, they left a notable gap, which traditional finance (TradFi) institutions like Nasdaq saw as an opportunity.

Nasdaq’s Crypto Custody Business Will Initially Focus on Bitcoin and Ether

Initially announced in September, the launch of Nasdaq’s crypto custody platform will represent the company’s first significant push into digital assets. According to Auerbach, the new unit will first offer custody services for heavyweights Bitcoin and Ether, before it broadens its array of products and services, including execution for financial institutions.

However, the custody platform is not Nasdaq’s first crypto-related venture. In 2021, the stock exchange operator launched a digital assets curriculum for financial advisors in collaboration with asset management firm Hashdex, aimed at providing educational resources on the evolution of the digital asset ecosystem.

More recently, the company teamed up with Brazil’s largest broker, XP, to launch a cryptocurrency exchange in the South American country. The exchange will initially allow users to trade cryptocurrencies, though it plans to add support for more digital assets and investment products in the future.

This article originally appeared on The Tokenist

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