Bitcoin A-Go: Bakkt Eyes Horizon After Inaugural Funding Round
The launch of cryptocurrency trading platform Bakkt’s bitcoin futures product saw high-profile delays in 2018. Yet the exchange’s mission is undeterred. That much is clear after Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler announced the play’s inaugural $182.5 million USD funding round to close out the year.
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VC Big Wigs Get a Piece of the Bakkt Pie
In a December 31st post, Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler announced the forthcoming cryptocurrency exchange had raised $182.5 million from 12 investors in its inaugural funding round.
In being backed by Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (ICE), the owner-operators of the New York Stock Exchange and numerous other powerhouse exchanges, Bakkt’s forthcoming arrival has generated significant buzz in the cryptoeconomy this year for the mainstream implications it bodes.
Now, the exchange’s first bout of funding raises the stakes — and the viability — of those implications.
Familiar cryptoverse participants in the round included players like Galaxy Digital, Pantera Capital, and Protocol Ventures. More mainstream investors included ICE itself and Microsoft’s venture capital subsidiary M12.
Loeffler hailed the funding not only as the latest step toward Bakkt’s actualization but, in extension, as another step toward America achieving regulatory maturation where cryptocurrencies were concerned.
“At an industry level, regulatory approval for physically delivered and warehoused bitcoin will establish and amplify the voice of U.S. authorities as the digital asset market evolves globally,” Loeffler said.
“We have filed our applications and the timing for approval is now based on the regulatory review process.”
“At Bakkt, we’re focused on the work required, both near- and long-term, to evolve the applications for digital assets. Market quality, regulation, scale, security and utility are critical for establishing a strong foundation where innovation can flourish. Our first step is to establish the trust and infrastructure that builds confidence and grows participation at the institutional and merchant level.”
Shifting Crypto Tides: ICOs Out, VCs Still In
The 2017 initial coin offering boom was followed by an ICO bust in 2018.
But while retail investments into token offerings dwindled considerably on the year, it was business as usual for venture capitalists looking to place bets in the fledgling cryptoeconomy.
Just a friendly reminder that although retail ICOs are ded, VC investments remains red hot in cryptoland https://t.co/OTxecOTfxt
— ฿ully esq. (@BullyEsq) December 31, 2018
So ICOs may have been on the decline as of late, but venture capitalists have still found plenty of projects in the cryptoeconomy that could have major long-term financial upside.
For now, though, that actualized upside remains on the horizon. Only time will tell whether these crypto bets will have paid off in, say, a decade’s time. Until then, we all play the waiting game.
What’s your take? Will the rise of Bakkt be a major or overhyped storyline in the 2019 crypteconomy? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images via Pixabay