Crypto trading platform CrossTower is launching a capital markets desk for institutional clients.
Leading the desk is securities industry veteran Greg Bunn, who’s being hired as CrossTower’s chief strategy officer. Previously, Bunn served as global head of counterparty strategy at foreign exchange giant Citadel, and he also worked in senior roles at Deutsche Bank for more than 16 years.
Expanding from its spot exchange and over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk, CrossTower now offers digital asset lending, trade financing, structured products and trade execution across multiple venues.
“Ultimately we end up with something that looks and feels a little bit like what you see in the prime brokerage space,” Bunn said. “You can’t centralize the market because it’s by definition decentralized, but you will at least have more connected infrastructure that makes the market more efficient.”
Prime brokers are facilitators for financing and trading for deep-pocketed institutional investors.
Several crypto firms including Bequant, Coinbase, BitGo and Genesis Trading have announced in recent months their plans to build out their prime brokerage arms.
“I would say the biggest fund that we have on board is around $500 million [assets under management],” Bunn said. “What we’ve done is to meet the standards of an industrial-grade regulated securities exchange.”
While CrossTower is not targeting retail users with the capital markets desk, it is in discussions with “retail intermediaries” like wallet aggregators about becoming an exclusive partner for trade execution and financing, Bunn said.