ECONOMY

BNY-Backed Crypto Platform Fireblocks Seals Its Unicorn Status

Fireblocks has raised $310 million in a series D round that values the digital-asset platform at $2 billion, sealing its status as a unicorn.

The latest funding round is co-led by private equity firms Sequoia Capital, Stripes Group, Spark Capital and Coatue Management, as well as DRW Venture Capital and SCB 10X, the venture arm of Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank Pcl. Bank of New York Mellon Corp. and SVB Capital are among Fireblocks’ existing backers.

The Fireblocks platform allows for usage of digital assets in areas like payments, gaming and non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. The firm’s technology can help financial institutions implement direct custody without having to rely on third parties. Its infrastructure has been used by over 500 institutions and secures more than $1 trillion in digital assets. It supports banks, crypto exchanges, lending desks, hedge funds and market makers such as Revolut, BlockFi, Celsius, Crypto.com and eToro.

“We have seen a certain maturity in the space and the development of projects utilizing blockchain technology that are outside of the crypto native arena,” Fireblocks’ Chief Executive Officer Michael Shaulov said. “We are working with a number of financial services firms around the world to expand use-cases regarding projects for digitization of currencies, securities and other real assets.”

The company plans to use the funds for hiring in areas such as research and development and customer support, as well as in sales and marketing to facilitate expansion in regions including Asia Pacific, Shaulov said. Fireblocks has also seen an uptick in demand given increased regulatory interest in digital assets, he said.

“As Thailand’s largest bank, we are looking forward to bringing Fireblocks’ solutions to future users in Southeast Asia,” said Mukaya Panich, chief venture and investment officer at SCB 10X.

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