Sequoia and Paradigm Invest $1.15B in Citadel Securities

Chicago-based market maker is looking to extend its reach to crypto

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key takeaways

  • Venture capital firm Sequoia led the round through investments from its Heritage, Global Equities and Global Growth funds
  • Crypto-focused investment firm Paradigm will help Citadel expand to more markets and asset classes, including crypto, according to Paradigm co-founder Matt Huang

Venture capital firm Sequoia Capital and crypto-focused investment firm Paradigm have invested $1.15 billion in market maker Citadel Securities as it looks to ​​further scale its business and expand into new markets.

Based in Chicago, Citadel offers equity and fixed income products to 1,600 clients globally, including central banks, financial institutions, government agencies, corporations, insurers and sovereign wealth funds.

“As technological innovation in financial markets becomes only more important, we see enormous opportunities to meet the needs of our clients across more markets and more products,” Citadel Securities CEO Peng Zhao said in a statement.

Citadel Securities Chairman Ken Griffin told the Economic Club of Chicago in October that his company does not trade cryptocurrencies because of regulatory uncertainties around them, Reuters reported.

A Citadel spokesperson did not immediately return Blockworks’ request for comment about how the company could look to get involved in crypto. 

Sequoia led the funding round through investments from Sequoia Heritage, Sequoia Capital Global Equities and its Global Growth Fund.

“Citadel Securities has carved out a unique place in the financial markets through its ability to absorb and price risk using techniques and capabilities from far outside the traditional world of Wall Street,” Sequoia Partner Alfred Lin said in a statement. 

A Sequoia representative did not immediately return Blockworks’ request for comment. 

Sequoia has recently signaled its interest in the crypto space. It changed its Twitter bio last month to say: “Mainnet faucet. We help the daring buidl legendary DAOs from idea to token airdrops. LFG.”  It also recently auctioned off its 2005 YouTube memo as a non-fungible token (NFT) on OpenSea for $884,776 worth of ether.

Meanwhile, Paradigm is an investment firm focused on investing in crypto and Web3 companies and protocols. It often invests at early stages and offers additional capital to its portfolio companies over time, according to the firm.

Paradigm announced the launch of a $2.5 billion venture fund in November. The new fund was to operate alongside Paradigm’s existing flagship fund and will “continue investing in the next generation of crypto companies and protocols,” Paradigm co-founders Matt Huang and Fred Ehrsam said at the time.

“We look forward to partnering with the Citadel Securities team as they extend their technology and expertise to even more markets and asset classes, including crypto,” Huang said in a statement. 

A Paradigm spokesperson declined to comment on the investment in Citadel.


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