As the air hissed out of the crypto blimp this year, and one debacle after another left investors with portfolios resembling the Hindenburg, one could’ve imagined traditional financial institutions taking a victory lap. After all the hoopla, decentralized finance challengers weren’t looking like such superior alternatives, after all.
But for the most part, that hasn’t happened. Old school Wall Street, slow to warm to digital assets, has only tightened its embrace amid the crypto winter that has seen trillions in value go up in smoke.
That’s the lesson coming out of Talos, a unicorn startup that provides the infrastructure and tools to trade digital assets for a variety of Wall Street institutions, from banks and hedge funds to custodians and OTC dealers.
“For the vast majority of organizations, we have seen unwavering support of digital assets,” Talos CEO Anton Katz told Insider in a recent interview.
Talos, which raised $105 million in a Series B round in May at a $1.25 billion valuation, has seen its business boom over the past four months even as the market has plummeted, according to Katz. Headcount over the past year has grown from 30 to 80, and it’s still aggressively hiring, Katz said.
“The growth right now is the fastest we’ve had ever,” he said, adding that second-quarter performance — across a variety of metrics including new clients and signed contracts — was the best in the company’s four-year history.
“You wouldn’t expect that in this kind of market,” Katz said.
Katz is hoping to harness this momentum to become Wall Street’s go-to platform and provider of digital asset tools, such as sourcing liquidity, price discovery, automated execution, post-trade clearing and settlement, and lending and borrowing.
Talos’ growth spurt amid the digital asset sell-off is attributable to several factors, Katz said.