Barclays, a British multinational investment bank and financial services company has created a senior staff team to explore the prospect of cryptocurrency trading to locate opportunities within the crypto space.
The team was headed by the former head of energy trading Chris Tyrer. Marvin Barth, Barclays’ Head of Global FX Strategy and Lee Brain, a blockchain expert and one of the leaders of the Barclays’ technology division, are also among the team leaders. Specifically, the project will explore the possibility of integrating a digital assets trading desk into its capital markets business.
This step runs contrary to what Barclays CEO Jes Staley, previously told about cryptocurrencies.
“Cryptocurrency is a real challenge for us because, on the one hand, there is the innovative side of it and wanting to stay in the forefront of technology’s improvement in finance,” said Staley. “On the other side of it, there is the possibility of cryptocurrencies being used for activities that the bank wants to have no part of.”
Despite official skepticism regarding cryptocurrencies, major financial companies are moving forward with plans to trade of digital assets. In March, Barclays began serving U.S. cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase in a partnership which allowed considerably faster funding options for UK traders.