The cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has recently attracted several Asian financial firms in order to launch a sizable investment fund centered on blockchain ventures. This follows in the footsteps of the cryptocurrency exchange Binance, which recently announced that it would introduce a cryptocurrency-focused fund of its own. This would seem to indicate that cryptocurrency exchanges are increasingly turning their eyes towards investment funds, as Huobi steams ahead with an aggressive expansion plan.
This news came from the China Money Network and broke on the 1st of June. Huobi is pegged as the third largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world in terms of trade volumes, and it would appear that the company is set on increasing its presence in the cryptocurrency and blockchain sector through this latest fund. Huobi will enter into a partnership with the South Korean company Kiwoom Securities as well as the China-based investment firm NewMargin Capital in order to realize the $93 million fund. Another South Korean firm, called Mirae Asset Financial Group, is supposedly also involved as an investor in the project. The fund is intended to act as a vehicle for blockchain startup investments and is also intended to improve Sino-Korean collaboration on potential blockchain applications. The focus on South Korea is also part of a larger strategy from Huobi’s side, as the Singapore-based exchange has recently launched a dedicated South Korean subsidiary.
Notably, this decision comes off the heels of Binance’s announcement that it will create a massive $1 billion blockchain fund, with the very similar aim of supporting startups in the blockchain and cryptocurrency field. Moreover, Binance is no newcomer to helping attract capital for blockchain firms. The Binance Labs division has previously supported several blockchain projects, one of which was the $30 million funding round for the privacy-centric MobileCoin. It should be noted that although Binance’s fund is considerably larger than that of Huobi, Huobi has also already launched another, exchange-traded cryptocurrency fund. This other fund follows Huobi’s market index, tracking Huobi’s ten most traded virtual currencies against Tether. The index is intended to reflect the ”general performance of the Huobi market”, and this exchange-traded fund will be a further indication to this.
These similar ventures appear to indicate that cryptocurrency exchanges are beginning to look towards establishing funds as a way to attract funding for blockchain startups. What’s more, it would also seem as if the cryptocurrency exchanges are spurring each other on with these types of investments. Huobi has recently shared plans to open new offices in San Francisco and London, which coupled with its new South Korean subsidiary could be regarded to constitute a relatively aggressive expansion plan.
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Rasmus Pihl is a writer for Toshi Times by day and an avid follower of the cryptocurrency industry by night. Rasmus holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from the Gothenburg School of Business, Economics, and Law and runs a Swedish marketing consulting firm. Moreover, when he isn’t writing for Toshi Times, traveling, working or changing the world in some other capacity, Rasmus is more than likely caught up in postgraduate studies.