On Tuesday last week, the crypto industry at large was rattled, as insiders claimed that Nasdaq, one of the world’s foremost financial markets, had plans to launch a Bitcoin (BTC) futures contract. Initially, the rumors regarding this development were cast aside, lambasted for being “baseless” and “full of holes.”
However, according to a company representative, who reached out to Express U.K., Nasdaq legitimately has plans to launch a crypto-centric derivatives product.
Nasdaq Bitcoin Futures “Should Launch” In H1 2019
Joseph Christinat, the vice president of Nasdaq’s media outreach branch, recently took to Express, the United Kingdom’s foremost tabloid, to convey his excitement for its proposed Bitcoin vehicle.
Speaking to the outlet, Christinat, verifying the aforementioned rumors, claimed that Nasdaq’s Bitcoin foray is slated to launch in Q1 or Q2 2019, adding that his firm is awaiting a regulatory green light from the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
Although skeptics are adamant that the CFTC won’t give its blessing to the proposed vehicle, as made apparent with the introduction of CME’s and CBOE’s Bitcoin futures, this shouldn’t be a valid qualm.
This official confirmation comes just days after Gabor Gurbacs, VanEck’s digital asset strategist, took to Consensus: Invest’s stage to claim that his firm was joining hands with Nasdaq to “bring a regulated crypto 2.0 futures-type contract” to market.
@Nasdaq and VanEck’s @MVISIndices announces #index #partnership and intention to bring to market transparent, regulated and surveilled #DigitalAssets products, such as #Bitcoin futures contracts. More info to come. Share & follow us. #crypto #futures #SMARTS #ConsensusInvest pic.twitter.com/Q2oCZx4pp1
— Gabor Gurbacs (@gaborgurbacs) November 27, 2018
Surprisingly, the Nasdaq representative divulged that this move was a long-time coming. More specifically, Christinat noted that the New York institution has had its eyes on crypto assets for years, adding that Nasdaq first entered into the blockchain realm in 2013, when the now decade-old innovation “first popped up” and “leaned out of the window.”
Maintaining that Nasdaq means business when it comes to the cryptosphere, even amid a market downturn, Christinat noted:
“We’ve put a hell of a lot of money and energy into delivering the ability to do this and we’ve been all over it for a long time – way before the market went into turmoil, and that will not affect the timing of this in any way. No. Period. We’re doing this no matter what.”
Nasdaq, Fidelity, ConsenSys Toss A Bone To ErisX
In related news, ErisX, an up and coming crypto-centric platform backed by not only TD Ameritrade, but a number of blockchain-friendly venture capitalists, divulged that it concluded its Series B fundraising round.
This surprising development, which comes smack dab amid a dramatic Bitcoin downturn, came courtesy of an ErisX-stamped press release, released publicly on December 4th, 2018.
In the release, the American upstart claimed it received an undisclosed amount of funding from an “influential group of investors” across an array of industries. Nasdaq, hardware giant Bitmain, blockchain’s “Google” ConsenSys, Boston-based Fidelity Investments, and Monex Group (owner of Japan’s CoinCheck) were just some of the notable organizations named as backers.
The aforementioned join the following crypto-friendly institutions and financial industry heavyweights: CBOE, Digital Currency Group, Pantera, Susquehanna, and TD Ameritrade.
As reported by Live Coin Watch in early-October, ErisX intends to launch Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin futures, a product likely to appeal to both retail and institutional investors alike.
So it seems that Nasdaq isn’t afraid to invest in its competitors, accentuating that the organization sees ground-breaking potential in cryptocurrencies and related technologies.