Bithumb Launches OTC Trading Desk ‘Ortus’

In a bid to serve the institutional clients in the crypto market, South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb has launched an over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk.

Branded as “Ortus,” the platform will execute block deals and, as described by the firm, work as a “matchmaking service catering to institutional clients.”

Mentioning the new platform, Bithumb’s director Rahul Khanna said: “Institutions trading digital assets need to open accounts at exchanges and OTC desks around the world; however, there is no real solution for an aggregated liquidity provider or a trusted interdealer where Institutions can trade these assets.

“To fill this market gap, Ortus will operate to allow institutions to buy and sell digital assets through a network of global liquidity providers and benefit from a competitive and best price execution service.”

According to the announcement, the OTC platform will maintain a strict onboarding process and institutions will have to provide sufficient KYC and AML documentation.

Ortus will operate as a subsidiary of the Hong Kong-headquartered Bithumb Global and has offices in London, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Sydney, and Buenos Aires.

According to its website, the platform will also offer insured custodian services and transfer from the US bank accounts. However, it is still not clear whether the platform will execute only Bitcoin OTC trades or add other digital assets as well.

After Retail, Target the Institutions Customers

Bithumb is not the first crypto exchange to open an OTC desk as many big players in the industry launched similar platforms to lure institutional investors. Last month, Bittrex, a major US-based cryptocurrency exchange, launched an OTC platform supporting 200 tokens. Coinbase, Binance, and Circle also have their own OTC desks to execute bulk crypto deals coming from financial institutions.

Apart from the crypto exchanges, many mainstream players are also planning for crypto OTC desks as FortuneZ reported last month that the US-based brokerage firm Nukkleus Capital is planning to open a similar platform.

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