SoFi to launch cryptocurrency trading and lending

American fintech startup SoFi announced its plans to move into cryptocurrency and roll out crypto trading platform, CNBC reported on February 26.

Headquartered in San Francisco, SoFi launched back in 2011 with an initial focus on student-loan refinancing and has since expanded its services to areas such as mortgage loans, wealth management, and mortgage refinancing. In 2017, the startup acquired Zenbanx which now allows them to deal with debit, payments, and money transfers.

The company is not disclosing which cryptocurrencies are to be listed yet, but will reportedly launch its crypto services by the second quarter of 2019. What is known right now is that the trading and price-checking of digital assets will be done through Coinbase.

Earlier this year, in February, the company launched SoFi Invest — a new investment product that offers trading and price monitoring of cryptocurrencies. SoFi filed for two exchange-traded-funds (ETFs), a credit card, and an initial public offering to be held in future. It will reportedly introduce an Annual Percentage Yield account for user deposits under an umbrella of SoFi Money, another new arm of the company.

The firm’s CEO Anthony Noto, who previously worked at Twitter as the chief financial officer and managing director at Goldman Sachs became part of SoFI last January.

He said, later this year, they plan to release joint accounts, “saving vaults,” and round ups “to make SoFi money even more useful.”

The firm has a valuation of $4.4 billion and has already raised $1.9 billion from big names that include SoftBank and PayPal founder and Facebook’s angel investor Peter Thiel.

SoFi’s move into cryptocurrency comes as the price of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are crashing down. Still, Mr. Noto is positive and sees the volatility as “two-sided coin.”

“Some people may see it as an opportunity,” Noto said to CNBC.

 

Image source: CNBC.com

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