The world’s largest inter-dealer broker, TP ICAP, says it’s launching a new crypto trading platform to meet a surge in demand.
Founded in 2004, the London-based provider of market infrastructure acts as an over-the-counter intermediary between banks and investment houses in the daily trading of currencies, interest rate swaps, commodities, shares, and bonds.
The new platform, which is subject to registration with the UK Financial Conduct Authority, has already started to onboard clients and will officially launch in the second half of the year, by which time TP ICAP expects to announce additional liquidity providers.
It will be a collaborative effort involving Fidelity, the Standard Chartered-owned Zodia Custody, and global financial liquidity provider Flow Traders to ensure clients have a segregated and interoperable model for execution and settlement, a key requirement for clients entering this new asset class.
TP ICAP launched its Digital Assets business in 2019, allowing clients to trade crypto asset derivative products. Simon Forster, co-head at Digital Assets, says that demand for cryptocurrencies is growing and TP ICAP’s entrance into the market is a natural evolution for the company.
“Client demand to trade spot crypto assets is significant and growing, with interest coming from our traditional customer base across the different asset classes we operate in. But to date many of our clients have been prevented from accessing crypto asset markets due to current limitations in market infrastructure, with most execution venues requiring pre-funding and also acting as custodian.
This poses challenges from a conflict of interest perspective and results in fragmented liquidity. Our partnership, and resultant new platform, is a natural evolution in market structure that will make digital assets, such as Bitcoin, more accessible for the wholesale market.”
According to a report by Reuters, the company has sustained revenue declines in various areas of its business, including energy and commodities, resulting in a 9% drop in first-quarter revenue to $668 million compared to $773 million for the same period in 2020.
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