Three of the world’s leading banks — Citigroup, BNY Mellon and Wells Fargo — have joined a funding round for a US developer of cryptocurrency trading technology, highlighting the work now being done on Wall Street to prepare for the growing adoption of digital assets.
The $105mn Series B financing, scheduled to be announced on Tuesday, values the company, called Talos, at $1.25bn. Led by technology investor General Atlantic, the round also includes such previous Talos backers as Fidelity Investments and venture capital investors Andreessen Horowitz and PayPal Ventures.
The deal comes as crypto prices are falling and many of the great powers of traditional finance are waiting for greater regulatory clarity to make crucial decisions on digital asset strategies.
It shows that behind the scenes, financial groups are looking for ways to make the crypto trade safer for institutional investors and prepare for the prospect that traditional assets will take a digital form — as tokens residing on blockchains, the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies.
“Our job is to make sure our clients can connect,” said chief executive Anton Katz, an MIT-educated software engineer whose past experiences include serving as head of trading technology at AQR Capital Management, a hedge fund, and competing as a member of the Israeli national shooting team. “We are the rails.” Katz said he expects Talos will handle a greater variety of digital assets in the coming years as trading methods developed in the crypto business find uses in traditional finance.