Nasdaq Crypto Custody Crystallizing, Launch Coming Soon: Report

Wall Street interest in crypto products may be on the upswing

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Goran Vrhovac/Shutterstock modified by Blockworks

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Nasdaq’s hotly anticipated crypto custody suite is taking shape, with a launch reportedly expected before the end of the second quarter. 

Bloomberg reported on Friday that Nasdaq Inc., the parent company of the US tech-heavy stock exchange, is “pushing ahead to get all the necessary technical infrastructure and regulatory approvals in place.” Bloomberg cited an interview with Ira Auerbach, senior vice president and head of Nasdaq Digital Assets, in reporting the news. 

Nasdaq first made its digital asset ambitions known in September 2022, as previously reported by Blockworks, when its president and chief executive, Adena Friedman, then said in a statement that the “technology that underpins the digital asset ecosystem has the potential to transform markets over the long-term.”

“To deliver on that opportunity, our focus will be to provide institutional-grade solutions that bring greater liquidity, integrity, and transparency to support the evolution,” she said in a statement at the time. 

Nasdaq’s reported launch by the end of the second half of 2023 comes at a time when crypto industry participants say traditional finance interest is on the uptick. And the stock exchange’s move is at least one indicator that institutional-grade crypto interest remains strong, despite a disastrous 2022 for many sectors within the digital asset ecosystem. 

In the fourth quarter of 2022, BNY Mellon said it would provide custody and transfer services for bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH), specifically, to a number of its institutional clients, according to a Blockworks’ story from the time. 

Crypto traders in more recent weeks have been eyeing what their traditional finance counterparts are doing in the space, as bitcoin, ether and crypto more broadly have found their local floor — and have already booked substantial performance gains so far in 2023.

There’s also been a related crypto-native push of late, per Blockworks’ previous reporting, to cash in on opportunities to provide blockchain-based alternatives to those moves made by the likes of Nasdaq and its counterparts.


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