Chicago-based institutional digital asset exchange Seed CX announced on Wednesday it has secured $15 million in a Series B fundraise led by US-based global alternative investment firm Bain Capital Ventures, which has subsequently acquired a stake in the blockchain platform.
The investment is meant to support the expansion of Seed CX’s trading infrastructure, to enlarge its institutional trading network and more than double the number of its employees to around 40, chiefly in operations, market surveillance and technology.
According to the company’s statement, Seed CX has raised a total of over $25 million so far from, among others, crypto investors OKCoin USA and Divergence Digital Currency Fund, investment bank XMS Capital, and trading firm CMT Digital.
What Bain Capital Ventures mainly found attractive in the institutional trading platform was that it offers more than mere spot trading and is not just another unlicensed venue, managing director Salil Deshpande said, referring to the different official licenses Seed CX holds.
“Institutions are seeking regulated, secure, and reliable crypto venues with diverse products that allow them to earn strong returns,” Deshpande noted. “The lack of institutional exchanges is the single largest barrier to crypto asset class growth. Seed CX is serving this unmet need of institutions and has assembled an outstanding team of executives to support this vision.”
The regulatory approvals that the platform and its units are said to possess include Execution Facility (Commodity Futures Trading Commission), Introducing Broker (National Futures Association), Money Services Business (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network), and Money Transmitter (for 15 US states). Seed CX also has a pending BitLicense (New York State Department of Financial Services) and Broker Dealer (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority).
According to a December announcement, US cryptocurrency marketplace Bittrex owns a majority stake in Seed CX.