As an engineer at SpaceX, Joshua Greenwald was charged with spearheading automation and propulsion on the aerospace startup’s Moonraker project. Now, he is directing his efforts toward a radically different industry, albeit one that also has lunar ambitions.
Greenwald, who spent more than a decade as a trader prior to his stint at SpaceX, has founded a cryptocurrency exchange, LXDX, that seeks to make the nascent asset class more accessible to institutional investors while also providing individual investors with professional-grade trading tools.
“Our immediate focus is on cryptocurrency and enabling every investor to utilize the exclusive tools, like smart order routing, that only institutions previously could access. When we built top tier infrastructure for traditional markets, our team solved many of the same problems facing cryptocurrency exchanges today,” Greenwald said in remarks cited by LeapRate.
LXDX has received funding from firms such as the venture arm of Dymon Asia Capital, a $4.9 billion investment group based out of Singapore. Recently, LXDX relocated to Malta, a cryptocurrency-friendly country that has stylized itself as Europe’s “Blockchain Island.” In so doing, it joins a number of exchange heavyweights, including top-five platforms OKEx, Binance, and ZB.com.
The startup also joins a growing arms race among firms seeking to entice institutional investors like pensions, endowments, and hedge funds into the cryptocurrency markets, a development that analysts including Mike Novogratz have said will spur the next great cryptocurrency bull run.
Most recently, Voyage, a cryptoasset investing platform founded by Uber’s first CTO and a former E*Trade executive, launched an institutional brokerage arm led by an ex-Deutsche Banke executive.
However, established cryptocurrency firms that heretofore have served primarily retail investors are also positioning themselves to serve the “herd” of institutions, assuming it does arrive as anticipated. For example, Coinbase, best known as a brokerage for first-time crypto buyers, has spun off an institutional arm, which recently opened an office in New York that will be staffed by 100 employees.
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