Australian digital asset manager Monochrome has concluded a $1.8 million Series A fundraiser led by some of crypto’s most influential entrepreneurs, underscoring the growing potential of institutional-grade crypto-asset solutions.
The cash injection will be used by Monochrome to develop new products specializing in Bitcoin (BTC) and other digital assets, the company said. The Series A was co-led by Litecoin creator Charlie Lee, Blockstream chief strategy officer Samson Mow, former Binance CFO Wei Zhou and Kain Warwick, the founder of Blueshyft and DeFi protocol Synthetix. Following the raise, Monochrome’s total valuation was estimated to be worth roughly $15 million.
Monochrome was launched earlier this year by Jeff Yew, the former chief executive of Binance Australia, to provide an institutional onramp to cryptocurrency investing. The company is perhaps best known for the Monochrome Bitcoin Fund, a capital growth vehicle for wholesale investors. The fund targets a near 100% allocation to physical Bitcoin, which is custodied by U.S. trust company BitGo Trust.
Wei Zhou described Monochrome as Australia’s “leading investment firm specializing in regulated access into digital assets,” underscoring the country’s “progressive regulatory stance” towards cryptocurrency.
Like other advanced industrialized nations, Australia’s cryptocurrency regulations are still in their nascent stages. While the country does not recognize crypto as money, digital asset trading is legal in the country and is subject to Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing regulations. As Cointelegraph recently reported, Australia’s financial regulator recently warned citizens against using unregistered cryptocurrency businesses.
Related: Australian crypto businesses tell Senate inquiry about being de-banked up to 91 times
Monochrome, like other crypto-focused asset managers, is targeting institutional investors for inclusion in the digital-asset economy. Demand for crypto among institutional players appears to be growing, as evidenced by the large inflows into Grayscale and CoinShares products, among others. Surveys of institutional investors also reveal that a large percentage of wealth managers are planning to buy crypto investments or increase their exposure to the assets.
Related: Franklin Templeton seeks experts for Bitcoin trading and crypto research
With Bitcoin standing the test of time, more investors are likely to seek out exposure to digital assets in pursuit of broader macroeconomic objectives. Financial advisers could lead the charge now that crypto investing has been significantly de-risked from a career reputation standpoint.
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