Fidelity Investments to launch crypto trading business in Europe

After launching the business in the US last year, Fidelity Investments will establish crypto trading and custody services for European institutional investors.

Fidelity Investments has said it will establish a cryptocurrency trading business in Europe, after first launching the business a year ago in the US to service institutional investors trading digital assets.

In a statement, Fidelity Investments said the European business will provide the ‘essential building blocks’ for digital asset investing including institutional-grade custody, and trade execution via a trading venue with multiple sources of liquidity, on a platform using the fund manager’s internal crossing engine and smart order router.

Chris Tyrer, a managing director at Barclays who led the bank’s digital assets project, will join Fidelity Investments as head of Fidelity Digital Assets in Europe to manage the new business and lead client service.

“Since launching Fidelity Digital Assets in the US over a year ago, we’ve seen significant interest and engagement by the institutional community, which show no signs of slowing,” said Tom Jessop, head of corporate business development for Fidelity Investments and president of Fidelity Digital Assets.

“We’re also encouraged by continued corporate and venture investment in market infrastructure companies as well as the entry of traditional exchanges into the digital assets ecosystem. These and other market indicators, alongside interest expressed from UK. and European client prospects, indicate a market with increasing potential which gives us the confidence to expand the digital assets business geographically.”

Fidelity Investments confirmed plans to launch a US-based cryptocurrency firm last year to support institutional investors engaging with digital assets, with custody and trade execution services. Fidelity has been exploring the use of blockchain and cryptocurrencies since 2014 via its Bitcoin Incubator.

“The demand we’ve seen for Fidelity’s digital asset custody and trade execution services has been borderless, and we’re scaling our business to operate in a variety of jurisdictions to support this industry for the long-term,” Tyrer, head of Fidelity Digital Assets in Europe, commented. “In doing so, we’re building on the commitment to make digitally-native assets, such as bitcoin, more accessible to institutional investors.”