Fidelity has its eyes on Ethereum.
When the Boston-based asset manager launched its digital custody last year, Bitcoin was the only cryptocurrency available to eligible investors. But Fidelity may soon wade into Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies as well, according to remarks Fidelity Digital Assets President Tom Jessop gave to Bloomberg on Monday.
“[Last year] was a real breakthrough year for the space, given the interest in Bitcoin that accelerated when the pandemic started,” Jessop told the publication. “We’ve seen more interest in Ether, so we want to be ahead of that demand.”
Fidelity Digital Custody is expanding its headcount by 70% across the firm’s Dublin, Boston, and Salt Lake City offices, a significant investment into the upstart imprint. Jessop says the expansion is partially due to “the diversity of interest” from new and existing customers, and to help Fidelity offer cryptocurrency trading services throughout more of the week—unlike most financial markets, cryptocurrency trading occurs 24/7. Jessop said the increased resources will help the firm research new products and expand its offerings beyond Bitcoin.
“Bitcoin has been the entry for a lot of institutions,” Jessop said. “It’s now really opening up a window on what else is going on in the space.”
Fidelity is not the only asset manager eying Ethereum. In a note to investors last week, Goldman Sachs called Ethereum “a cryptocurrency with the highest real use potential,” noting Bitcoin’s lack of use cases and slow transaction speeds.
“[Ether] currently looks like the cryptocurrency with the highest real use potential as Ethereum, the platform on which it is the native digital currency, is the most popular development platform for smart contract applications,” wrote the firm.
Disclosure: the author of this piece owns some Ethereum.