According to Tom Jessop, Fidelity’s Head of Corporate Business Development, 2019 will be a big year for cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.
Fidelity is a multinational financial services corporation which is based in Boston, Massachusetts. As of March 2018, Fidelity is the fourth largest asset manager with $2.5 trillion in asset under administration. Fidelity Investments manages a wide range of mutual funds, provides fund distribution and investment advice, wealth management, life insurance, retirement services, and securities execution and clearance. The company is suggesting that soon the crypto industry will gain the momentum and return to its former self. According to Fidelity, 2019 will be the start of something new and exciting in the crypto industry.
Recently Fidelity has launched a startup Fidelity Digital Asset Services (FDAS) to appease its existing customers who are holding digital assets and to attract new institutional customers. Tom Jessop is also the president of Fidelity Digital Asset Services. According to Tom, the reason behind forming FDAS is that several clients have a large chunk of crypto assets in self-custody and some customers do not have time to execute orders to buy cryptocurrencies. FDAS is there to bridge that gap. Tom said that:
“We’ve come across several clients who have reasonably large positions in crypto that are held in self-custody, and a number of customers who cannot execute orders to purchase digital assets until they have a custodian. So, I think there is a lot of pent-up demand right now.”
Years back blockchain became a popular topic among the groups of Fidelity and Fidelity started experimenting with the technology through Fidelity Labs. Soon the division became interested in Bitcoin mining and opened a new platform which allowed the customer to purchase items with Bitcoin in the cafeteria. With the help of this program, Fidelity executives learned a lot about the cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology and after a long period of experimentation Fidelity launched FDAS. According to Tom, the primary goal of FDAS is to provide the institutional brokerage capabilities to hedge funds, family offices, and other institutions who want to invest in the digital asset class. Tom said that
“I think we are starting to see acceleration… I don’t know what phase (innovator, early-adopter, early majority, etc.) we are in, but I think that with some of these recent announcements – our announcement, Bakkt’s launch, Harvard, Stanford and MIT allocated into this asset class – we are now seen as this interesting and transformative asset class… So, we can expect more news heading into 2019 that raises the bar and helps growth in the [crypto and blockchain] market.”
Tom is confident that the crypto industry is set to experience a new level of growth and popularity in the coming year. According to Tom, currently blockchain innovations are at all time high and more and more developers and businesses are seeing the crypto industry as a perfect place to build their projects.