Crypto exchange Gemini announced Thursday that it had agreed to purchase Bitria, a San Fransisco-based start-up that provides traditional portfolio management tools for use in crypto investments. The goal of Bitria is to provide a platform for traditional asset managers and financial advisors to use in helping their clients invest in cryptocurrencies.
Gemini said that it seeks to integrate Bitria’s Separately Managed Accounts and its Digital Turnkey Asset Management platform into its own exchange capabilities. The integration is intended to give advisors access to more than 70 different cryptocurrencies through Gemini’s exchange as well as giving them access to their client’s portfolios all through a single interface. Other features include portfolio rebalancing, tax-loss harvesting, data connectivity and fee collection.
Similar to Coinbase’s acquisition of FairX, this acquisition comes as financial advisors attempt to meet the rising demand for crypto investments from their clients. Even though the popularity of cryptocurrencies has skyrocketed, traditional financial advisors often tend to have limited access to this ecosystem.
A June 2021 survey from the Financial Planning Association and the Journal for Financial Planning found that 49% of advisors have had clients ask about cryptocurrencies since the start of 2021. According to Dave Abner, the Global Head of Business Development at Gemini:
"Many financial advisors would only have access to one or two tokens through closed-end funds and spot crypto ETFs.”
Back in December 2021, Gemini announced that it would be expanding into new territories through a partnership with Columbia's largest bank, Bancolombia. At the time, a Gemini rep stated that the collaboration would serve “as an important step toward the strategic expansion of Gemini’s presence in Latin America.”