Fidelity’s crypto arm adds 210 positions as institutional demand surges

abdelaziz Fathi

Fidelity Digital Assets, the cryptocurrency unit of Boston-based Fidelity Investments, plans to double its staff in locations such as Dublin, Boston, and Salt Lake City, citing high demand for its services from institutional investors.

The increase in staff would help the firm offer services for other digital assets. The move would see the addition of about 210 new workers in client services, technology and operations that would focus on assets beyond bitcoin, a company spokesperson told Reuters.

New research published by Fidelity’s custody and trade execution business shows that 70% of institutional investors and wealth managers now are reviewing investments in cryptocurrencies and digital assets.

“As the demand for digital assets continues to steadily grow and the marketplace evolves, we will continue to expand our hiring efforts,” Tom Jessop, president of Fidelity Digital Assets, said.

Jessop added that the new personnel will be focused on developing the company’s technologies and expand to other forms of cryptocurrency, in addition to the already-used Bitcoin.

Fidelity’s cryptocurrency unit already features institutional-grade, crypto linked services, including custody offerings to safeguard holdings and execution services 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Fidelity, which has nearly $813 billion in assets under management (AUM), has been trying to structure a product that looks as close as possible to a traditional ETF. Trading bitcoin through an ETP structure removes the technical challenges associated with cryptocurrency such as setting up a wallet or trading or unregulated exchanges.

Fidelity Digital Assets only serves institutional investors such as hedge funds, family offices and market intermediaries.

Initially launched in the US, Fidelity’s crypto arm made the decision to target Europe back in 2019, hiring Chris Tyrer from Barclays to lead operations. The unit is one of the first crypto custody and trading platforms to be launched by an incumbent financial services player.

The increased European listings came even as the US Securities and Exchange Commission denied Fidelity Investments’ application for a long-awaited spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).

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