UK’s first regulated and centrally cleared trading venue Global Futures and Options Ltd., also known as GFO-X has completed a $30 million Series B funding round with M&G Investments as the lead. Markedly, the $332 billion asset management arm of the pensions giant invested $20 million in the crypto derivatives trading platform.
This marks a significant step towards restoring institutional investors’ confidence in the crypto landscape after the collapses that hit the industry last year. It provides a platform for traditional finance investors to gain exposure to several crypto-asset derivatives investment products.
M&G Partners With LCH on BTC Index Futures
The move comes barely eight months after M&G Investment signed a partnership deal with London Stock Exchange Group-majority-owned LCH SA. The partnership is designed to have GFO-X utilize LCH’s new clearing service, DigitalAssetClear. Specifically, GFO-X will use this platform to clear Bitcoin (BTC) index futures and options contracts that trade on its platform.
According to a GFO-X spokesperson, clients’ demand has contributed to “longer lead times”, therefore, both DigitalAssetClear and the partnership with GFO-X had wanted to launch this year. However, the launch is expected in the first quarter of 2024 and GFO-X is sure that the secured fund will play a significant role in this event.
The Need For Crypto Regulation
Meanwhile, Jeremy Punnett, M & G portfolio manager, highlighted the fact that the lack of regulated trading venues is hindering the advancement of the crypto derivatives trading market to a large extent. Furthermore, he presented London as a perfect location for GFO-X’s new global trading venue to thrive.
Punnett made this observation while acknowledging that the UK has the potential to become a global hub for crypto asset technology and investment. “This investment enables GFO-X to scale its operations as the business is set to benefit from investors shifting their trading from unregulated to regulated venues,” the portfolio manager added.
UK Authorities Intensifies Efforts Towards Crypto Regulation
The collapse of top crypto exchanges like FTX has necessitated the need for regulation and compliance amongst crypto projects. GFO-X is working towards becoming a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulated and centrally-cleared trading platform for crypto derivatives.
Similarly, authorities in the UK are putting together regulations to ensure that investors are safe in whatever crypto investment they indulge in.