Barclays to Create Venture Unit to Invest in Blockchain

Barclays UK Ventures is going to invest in start-ups with high potential returns, enter commercial agreements and, in the long term, open its own startups
16 April 2018   962

One of the world's largest banks has created a venture unit focused on blockchain technology, smart contracts and artificial intelligence, Financial Times reports.

Ben Dewey, former head of strategy for the bank, will head Barclays UK Ventures (BUKV), a division that will focus on "truly transformational new lines of business" with a view to making "material contributions" to the structure of the organization.

According to him, the new organization has a "relatively unlimited power", and he himself feels "very predisposed" to investing in start-ups working in this space.

"We represent the growth firm," said Ashok Vasani, the head of Barclays UK, adding that the new unit is opening "new lines to increase revenues in addition to the organic growth of our core business."

In addition to investing in start-ups with high potential returns, BUKV intends to enter commercial agreements and, in the long term, open its own start-ups.

Thus, Barclays is becoming one of the first organizations of this level to create venture units to work with the blockchain space.

Bakkt to Release Consumer App This Year

The app can be used for a wide range of tasks, e.g., crypto and securities trading, virtual goods purchase, etc
23 January 2020   92

Institutional Investor Platform Bakkt will release an app for retail investors this year, with which users can pay with cryptocurrency.

According to the president of Bakkt Adam White at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the application can be used for a wide range of tasks. In addition to trading cryptocurrencies, it will support various virtual “goods” like points of loyalty programs.

In addition, in the future it is possible to add securities trading, as well as the creation of a portal for shops and merchants. That is, the application will be more like a traditional fintech product like PayPal than a solution from a cryptocurrency exchange.

Although the Bakkt platform was originally created for institutional investors, the new director of Mike Blandina is very serious about entering the retail market. Earlier, he said that the application for retail investors should be released in the first half of 2020.

I do not think we are there yet. What gives me optimism is that we are seeing a lot of developer interest. I am confident that someone is going to find something.


Adam White

President of Bakkt

 White added that the cryptocurrency market is still underdeveloped.