The US president of the world's 2nd-largest bitcoin exchange says the firm aims to offer crypto-derivative trading within a year
FTX.USis aiming to offer cryptoderivative trading in less than a year, president Brett Harrison told Insider.
- It's an affiliate of
FTX, the world's second-largest bitcoin exchange, owned by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried.
- Currently, FTX.US only offers spot trading in compliance with strict regulatory frameworks in the US.
FTX.US, an affiliate of FTX - the world's second-largest bitcoin exchange - is aiming to offer cryptocurrency derivative trading in less than a year, president Brett Harrison told Insider.
The Berkeley, California-based firm offers a limited range of offerings compared to its international counterpart.
Where FTX offers both spot and derivatives platforms - with the latter making up a huge chunk of the firm's revenue - the US marketplace only offers mostly spot in compliance with strict regulatory frameworks in the US.
"We definitely hope to be able to offer them inside of a year," Harrison told Insider. "Quite frankly, we could have or should have started a long time ago, but we're definitely interested in going through the process and collaborating with the CFTC to be able to offer those products in the US."
Harrison said there are two possible routes to achieving their goal: through a de novo - which involves applying for a license from scratch - or through acquiring a firm. He said they are exploring both possibilities and declined to disclose more information about any potential acquisitions.
"We fully intend to go through in one form or another, so that we could eventually become a licensed derivatives exchange," he told Insider. "The ability to trade crypto derivatives on an exchange like FTX.US is an enormous source of potential for us as a business."
Launched in 2020, FTX.US initially offered spot trading in six coins: bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash, litecoin, paxos gold token, and tether.
Cryptocurrency billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, who owns both firms, in July said the US has "an enormous amount of potential growth, adding, "there just isn't near that much business going on there right now as you would expect, given the size of the economy."
Read more: The first bitcoin mutual fund is now trading. The top investment strategist behind it breaks down its novel approach to gaining safer crypto exposure without the hassle of buying coins directly
Bankman-Fried's statement came after his company on July 20 announced that it had raised $900 million in series B financing, implying a valuation of $18 billion. The majority of the funds, Bankman-Fried said, will be used for expansion and acquisition.
Harrison, who worked with 29-year-old Bankman-Fried at quantitative firm Jane Street Capital, is optimistic they will see the process through, highlighting the regulated CME Group - the Chicago Mercantile Exchange - as an example, which trades bitcoin futures contracts, and more recently, micro bitcoin futures.
The president, who was the former head of semi-systematic technology at Citadel Securities, also said FTX.US hopes to grow its retail base, in contrast to Coinbase's aim of expanding its institutional clients.
Currently, institutional volume comprises roughly 70% of the trading volume of FTX.US, Harrison said.
"We want our product to be a product for everyone," he told Insider. "I think that there's plenty of room in this space to have investors who are more casual investors."
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