Circle Sells Off OTC Desk To Kraken Exchange To Focus Solely On USDC Stablecoin Services


  • The Kraken exchange has acquired Circle’s OTC trading desk.
  • The team will be bringing forth an infrastructure that has been in development for six year, offering services through APIs for stablecoin adoption.

Circle recently announced that their platform would be going through some changes, namely positioning themselves as a stablecoin services provider exclusively. Having already sold their OTC trading desk, the firm made an announcement that there were many executives that will no longer work with the company. Just weeks ago, co-CEO Sean Neville even stepped down.

On Tuesday, Neville and CEO Jeremy Allaire made the announcement that the company’s complete attention would be on the stablecoin business through next year. A massive suite of stablecoin services is already being built around the dollar-pegged USDC. However, in making this transition, Naeem Ishaq (Chief Financial Officer) and Gus Coldebella (Chief Legal Officer) would only be assigned to advisory positions going forward, leaving their former roles behind.

The last few months has come with many departures from recent projects. Poloniex, for example, was sold off in October, though it still operates as a trading platform. The month prior, Circle closed the doors of their Circle Pay app, coinciding with the termination of the research department.

Perhaps one of the most interesting transitions is for the OTC trading desk that Circle had headed up. Rather than shutting down operation entirely, Neville and Allaire stated via Twitter that Kraken had taken over that platform, which co-founder and CEO Jesse Powell retweeted.

Kraken chimed in on Twitter about the announcement, confirming their acquisition in a separate post.

Kraken, in another announcement, stated that the trading desk would now be run by over 20 employees, and it will connect them with various trading partners in Asia, along with other parts of the world. The transition will offer more liquidity and tools for consumers.

With the most recent sale, Allaire and Neville believe that the Circle platform will be more focused on the “core strength” of the company, which is the infrastructure they created to “support USDC and unlock financial use cases worldwide.” In the next year, the team at Circle to provide customers with global payment, custody and stablecoin wallet APIs.

The blog states that the APIs will be services that are available to,

“businesses and developers everywhere who will be able to take advantage of the innovation and efficiency of stablecoins without the cost, complexity, and risk of implementing this infrastructure themselves.”

The full-length blog post by Allaire and Neville can be found at blog.circle.com.

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