Brian Armstrong, Coinbase’s co-founder and CEO, has revealed the majority of traders on Coinbase Pro are now institutional investors.
Speaking to Fred Wilson, co-founder of Union Square Ventures and investor in Coinbase, Armstrong said:
“90% of the money in the world is tied up in institutions, it’s not just retail. So we started talking to these potential customers.”
Armstrong says they had certain requirements, like a trusted custodian, which was something that didn’t exist at the time.
He doesn’t specify what time period he is referring to, but it would have probably been late 2017, early 2018, when Coinbase announced their aim to serve institutional investors.
“As we’ve gotten going, institutions have become a bigger and bigger part of our business,” Armstrong said before adding:
“We’ve started adding features like OTC trading through Coinbase custody where these large block trades are starting to happen. And institutions have become I think 60% of our trading volumes on Coinbase Pro as well.
So these are key customer segments for us and we’re just going to keep investing more and more in it.”
Other more traditional players are now entering the market like Fidelity which plans to start bitcoin trading for its institutional customers.
Then there’s Bakkt which plans to launch this July. Their aim is to serve institutional investors towards buying and selling bitcoin while under the jurisdiction of CFTC. In addition it appears they could facilitate the acceptance of bitcoin payments for large businesses like Starbucks.
Then of course there’s the ETF, which remains in regulatory limbo, but there have been a number of new commissioners now, so it won’t be easy to predict how a vote might go.