Market Maker Keyrock Raises $72M Series B Amid FTX Contagion
Digital asset market maker Keyrock has raised $72 million in a Series B funding round from a group of investors that include crypto fintech Ripple and venture capital firms SIX FinTech Ventures – the investment arm of financial market infrastructure provider SIX Group – and Middlegame Ventures.
Keyrock will use the funding to invest in infrastructure development, scalability tools and regulatory licensing across Europe, the U.S. and Singapore.
The funding round closed in September, Keyrock co-founder and CEO Kevin de Patoul told CoinDesk in an interview. However, the announcement comes at a pivotal time for market makers, who provide liquidity in crypto markets.
Alameda Research, the sister company of bankrupt exchange FTX and a major market maker, was revealed to have liquidity issues in a Nov. 2 CoinDesk report, striking the first domino that led to the collapse of FTX and a massive crypto contagion that continues to spread. However, the continued survival and health of other market makers is vital to retaining stability in other crypto markets.
Founded in 2017 in Brussels, Keyrock pulled most of its assets from FTX the weekend after the CoinDesk story broke, but “a little bit” remained stuck. The amount was “not consequential” to operations or the stability of the firm and no client funds were impacted at all. The minimal exposure came down to solid risk mitigation practices and an eye toward long-term strength rather than overly rapid growth.
“We had the vision to create a system that would allow us to provide liquidity at a very large scale to all digital assets,” explained de Patoul. “Today, digital assets equal crypto. In our minds, down the line, every single asset will have a digital representation.”
Keyrock was founded in Brussels in 2017 by de Patoul, Jeremy de Groodt and Juan David Mendieta. The firm uses proprietary technology to provide scalable and adaptable liquidity solutions for marketplaces and asset issuers, including more than 85 trading venues and investor Ripple.
Keyrock now has an office in the UK and plans to expand to Switzerland and Singapore in early 2023. In the past year, Keyrock has expanded its trading volume threefold despite the bear market and doubled its global workforce to over 100 employees. The firm plans to double that headcount again in the coming year, going against the tide of crypto industry hiring freezes.