Pure Digital Targets Institutions with Crypto Trading Platform

Pure Digital plans to provide a high throughput OTC market for digital assets with physical delivery and bank custody


Lauren Kiley, CEO, Pure Digital


key takeaways

  • Pure Digital plans to offer cash cryptocurrency trading for investors through their existing bank relationships
  • State Street is lending its foreign exchange technology to Pure Digital

On Thursday State Street introduced a company called Pure Digital to the world, to whom it would lend its foreign exchange technology for an interbank digital assets trading venue to launch this summer.

Campbell Adams, co-founder and head of markets for Pure Digital, and a veteran FX trader, founded the company three years ago as a digital currency initiative that will eventually span stablecoins and central bank digital currencies as well as cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. He told Blockworks the robust infrastructure of the foreign exchange market will bring the maturity that’s still missing in digital assets.

“It’s an exciting new world and we’re going to be the vehicle for you to do this the right way,” Adams said. “We’ll build the foundations for doing all the elements correctly, for engaging with the next generation of every single element from custody all the way through to market data and everything in between.”

The company plans to provide a high throughput OTC market for digital assets with physical delivery and bank custody. It’s in discussions with several other “top tier” banks, CEO Lauren Kiley told Blockworks, collaborating on what they need in place to meet client demand and how the market works. It will follow the foreign exchange prime brokerage model, whereby banks extend credit to their clients and set them up to trade behind their bank’s name.

“The big flaw of the crypto market is that it’s impossible for the real money — the asset managers pension funds,” Adams said. “You’ve got a fiduciary duty to trade in certain ways on certain exchanges in certain environments and they can’t do that currently. This offering will be regulated, and have only regulated participants and full transparency and full openness, with regard to regulation. They will be able to access the market they want to get into.”

Cryptocurrency trading is retail driven and fragmented, he said. In an OTC market, participants can control their credit, increase or decrease in the live environment, and extend relatives — they’re ultimately in control of their trading.

By contrast, on an exchange, where most cryptocurrency trading currently happens, traders don’t know with whom they’re trading, which could put them in a situation where they trade with jurisdictions they’re not allowed to, Adams added. 

“There’s a lot of experience, knowledge and robustness that the FX ecosystem can bring to the physical world,” he said. “Because we are transparent in the matching logic that we use, the integrity of the market will be very high.”

State Street is familiar with the Pure Digital business model. It was a founding partner in ParFX, Adams’ previous foreign exchange platform, a consortium of banks that did the first live production trade with Deutsche Bank in 2013.

Similarly, Pure Digital is building its OTC market with a consortium of banks that will act as liquidity providers, custodians and clearers.

Adams and Kiley said they expect it will make digital assets more accessible to a different set of end users, making Pure Digital both complementary to financial incumbents and competitive with others.

“It feels like the next, and maybe even final, stage in the evolution of the crypto market in terms of full mainstream adoption,” Kiley said.


Upcoming Events

Hilton Metropole | 225 Edgware Rd, London

MON - WED, MARCH 18 - 20, 2024

Crypto’s premier institutional conference returns to London in March 2024. The DAS: London Experience:  Attend expert-led panel discussions and fireside chats  Hear the latest developments regarding the crypto and digital asset regulatory environment directly from policymakers and experts   Grow your network […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Frax report cover.jpg


Frax saw continued development in its frxETH liquid staking derivative and Fraxlend money market throughout 2023. Frax V3 introduces an RWA strategy to drive utility to the protocol's cornerstone product, the FRAX stablecoin.


Following layoffs at BAYC parent Yuga Labs and OpenSea, Tiger Global marked down its stakes


Recent SEC filings suggest the regulator could be lining up the approval of multiple proposals in early January, segment observers argue


A dinner back in September gave big traders a heads up about the DOJ settlement, Bloomberg reported


On-chain debt capital markets platform deploys on Coinbase-incubated layer-2 after structured investment products push


Past performance is not indicative of future results, sure, but no need to rain on the bitcoin price parade just yet


Circle’s letter follows one from the Campaign for Accountability alleging ties to Justin Sun and TRON