Coinbase announced on Friday that it is exploring the addition of 37 new crypto assets to its popular Coinbase Custody service.
Love it or hate it, Coinbase is a force to be reckoned with in the cryptocurrency space. The past three months alone have seen the addition of an index fund, a crypto e-gift cards service, and a much-anticipated custody service.
Coinbase Custody is a new product offering aimed at institutional investors that promises to securely store digital assets. The service currently only supports Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin, however, the company announced yesterday that it is “exploring the addition of many existing and forthcoming crypto assets” and plans to add them as quickly and safely as possible.
So which assets are getting the official nod? Cardano (ADA), Ripple (XRP), Monero (XMR), Tezos (XTZ), and Telegram (GRAM), to name a few. A complete list of cryptocurrencies being considered is shown below.
Custody Does Not Equal Trading
Coinbase states unequivocally that just because a crypto asset has been added to its custody service does not mean that it has been – or will be – added to its trading platform.
According to the announcement:
Asset additions to Coinbase Custody have no bearing on whether they will be added to other Coinbase products. Asset additions for trading must pass our Digital Asset Framework.
The Digital Asset Framework is a set of factors by which Coinbase evaluates whether or not to add a particular crypto asset to its Coinbase Pro (formerly GDAX) trading platform.
The Crypto Community Reacts
Not surprisingly, reaction to the news came swiftly. Some crypto investors and enthusiasts, like Reddit user “PangolinCorax“, have opted to view the development in an optimistic light:
…Custody is a requirement for hedge fund holdings – so while not directly offering them to buy it, it still opens up institutional money for exposure to crypto. […] Can be wrong about terms here but the gist of it is it can be a much bigger deal than just listing a new coin for trade as it opens crypto up for trillions in new kinds of money.
Similar reactions have been expressed on Twitter as well:
— Zack Gall (@BlockchainZack) August 4, 2018
Of course, not everyone is quite so sanguine about the matter. Many feel that it is just a way for Coinbase to be able to profit from storing the coins without having to deal with the regulatory “is it a security or isn’t it” hassle of listing them.
And profit they do. To use the Coinbase Custody service, investors must store a minimum of $10 million worth of supported cryptocurrencies. There is a $100,000 setup fee and a monthly service fee of 0.1%.
As for me, I’m leaning toward the optimistic side of the debate. The addition of these new crypto assets can certainly bring in a significant influx of institutional investor money into the cryptocurrency markets and I think it can provide an additional indicator for determining the viability of an asset for trading.
What are your thoughts on the possible new additions to Coinbase Custody? Are there any other crypto assets they should consider adding? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, Coinbase