Fidelity Digital Asset Services (FDAS), the cryptocurrency arm of U.S financial giant Fidelity Investments, has announced the establishment of a Europe-based entity to provide crypto-related services to institutional investors.
According to a press release, the firm plans on providing enterprise-quality custody and trade execution services for hedge funds, family offices, and market intermediaries in Europe.
Tom Jessop, head of Corporate Business Development and president of Fidelity Digital Assets, stated that the launch of its New York office in 2018 revealed that many institutional investors are interested in its brokerage service and, as such, prompted the firm to establish a Europe arm.
He further acknowledged that the continued corporate and venture investment occurring in the digital asset space, as well as the launch of several cryptocurrency exchanges, contributed to the development.
“These and other market indicators, alongside interest expressed from the U.K. and European client prospects, indicate a market with increasing potential, which gives us the confidence to expand the digital assets business geographically,” Tom added.
Despite incorporating its U.K. entity yesterday, reports from Financial News indicated that the firm is yet to get the necessary regulatory approval to commence operations in Europe.
However, the chief operating officer at Fidelity Digital Assets, Michael O’Reilly, commented that he does not think the firm requires an additional license from U.K. regulators before they can operate. Instead, he only reiterated that “[the firm] will make sure that [it is] compliant with any U.K. or any other licenses that are required.”
As part of the announcement, the firm confirmed that it had chosen former managing director at Barclays, Chris Tyrer, to head the operations of Fidelity Digital Assets Europe, especially its customer service unit.