Capital markets News

NYSE parent to launch newco for Digital Asset Exchange


Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), the parent of the NYSE, plans to setup a new company Bakkt to create a regulated global ecosystem for digital assets. In other words an exchange.

The first use case is to trade and convert Bitcoin to and from fiat currencies.

“In bringing regulated, connected infrastructure together with institutional and consumer applications for digital assets, we aim to build confidence in the asset class on a global scale, consistent with our track record of bringing transparency and trust to previously unregulated markets,” said Jeffrey C. Sprecher, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Intercontinental Exchange.

In November 2018, Bakkt in association with ICE Futures U.S. and ICE Clear U.S. plans to launch a one day delivery Bitcoin contract and warehousing. That’s subject to CFTC review and approval. Additionally, Bakkt plans to fund and create a separate guarantee fund with details to follow.

Bakkt’s CEO Kelly Loeffler is also currently Chief Communications and Marketing offer for ICE. “Bakkt is designed to serve as a scalable on-ramp for institutional, merchant and consumer participation in digital assets by promoting greater efficiency, security and utility,” said Loeffler. “We are collaborating to build an open platform that helps unlock the transformative potential of digital assets across global markets and commerce.”

And the big merchant sign up is Starbucks.

“As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into US dollars for use at Starbucks,” said Maria Smith, Vice President, Partnerships and Payments for Starbucks. “As a leader in Mobile Pay to our more than 15 million Starbucks Rewards members, Starbucks is committed to innovation for expanding payment options for our customers.”

Perhaps it’s Friday but the Bitcoin price has hardly moved.

M12, Microsoft’s venture arm is also an investor. The ICE statement said other ‘expected’ investors are Fortress Investment Group, Eagle Seven, Galaxy Digital, Horizons Ventures, Alan Howard, Pantera Capital, Protocol Ventures, and Susquehanna International Group, LLP.

Yesterday the Boerse Stuttgart announced it was creating an ICO platform.