Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Chief Confident About Future for Bakkt and Crypto 

The ongoing regulatory delays and hurdles imposed by the US government have not dampened the enthusiasm for crypto related products such as the highly anticipated Bakkt launch.
Bakkt Will be a ‘Moonshot Bet’
The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) has recently announced its fourth quarter earnings which have beat some Wall Street predictions. Chief executive Jeffrey Sprecher took the opportunity to speak on the sterling performance and shed some light on the Bakkt crypto project. Seeking Alpha ran a full transcript of the conference call in which Sprecher referred to Bakkt as a “moonshot bet”.
Over a billion dollars has been spent on strategic investments in 2018, including the Bakkt crypto futures project, according to CFO Scott Hill. Sprecher added that Bakkt had raised over $180 million from ICE and twelve other investors and partners including Fortress Investment Group and Susquehanna International Group. He said that “as we look to 2019 and beyond we’re excited about the opportunities that lie ahead, not only for our core business but also for newer initiatives,” which includes Bakkt.
The launch delays have been largely the fault of the US government shutdown imposed by president Trump. The highly anticipated product has been seen as a major on-ramp for crypto as it includes some major players. The firm aims to create a crypto ecosystem to bring huge companies such as Starbucks and Microsoft into the crypto industry. Sprecher stated;
“That infrastructure has attracted a lot of very, very interesting companies that have come — some that have invested in Bakkt, some are just working with Bakkt to try to tap into that infrastructure for some new use cases that will involve blockchain and digital assets and other things that we can provide these people. Obviously, we’ve announced the Starbucks — our work with Starbucks and Microsoft. We have very, very large retail franchises global connectivity to end users that we hope will be brought into that ecosystem and could create a very, very valuable company out of that initiative if our business plan plays out.”
Regarding the Bakkt launch date there were no specifics mentioned, only that it is expected ‘later this year’. Last month the company revealed more details about its Bitcoin futures products. The Bakkt BTC (USD) Daily Future will be a 1 BTC contract that will be physically delivered.
Bakkt also announced the acquisition of assets from Rosenthal Collins Group (RCG) last month. The ‘back office’ infrastructure will be needed to develop the crypto ecosystem and ensure full security and a trusted fintech solution for its clients.
Image from Shutterstock
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Source: New feedNewsBTC.com

Bakkt to Foster Institution & Consumer Participation, No Leverage & Margin on Bitcoin Contracts

Bakkt, the digital asset platform by NYSE’s owner and backed by Microsoft and Starbucks is working hard at building a transparent and an institutional quality ecosystem for digital assets. CEO Kelly Loeffler explains that they are offering full collateralized or pre-funded bitcoin buying and selling meaning there will be no leverage or margin involved.
NYSE owner’s Bakkt hard at work
It’s been only two weeks that NYSE’s owner, Intercontinental Exchange announced the “launch of regulated, physical Bitcoin futures contract and warehouse planned for November 2018.” Bakkt, a global platform “designed to bring digital assets to the mainstream and help unlock the potential of this important technology.”
In its latest official blog, Kelly Loeffler, the CEO of Bakkt is talking about being already at work on creating an open and regulated ecosystem for digital assets. She shared how in 1999, Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman has predicted the emergence of e-cash and “now are we seeing the promise of a true digital currency.”
From regulated, institutional trading and security solutions to offering more transaction choices to a customer, Bakkt is working on the wider application of digital assets.
The news of the Bakkt has been seen as one of the most important ones for the investors and experts alike. And given the giants viz. Microsoft and Starbucks included in this, it certainly holds a lot of potential for the future of the crypto market. Loeffler acknowledged the “very strong” response they received from worldwide.
People are certainly feeling positive as Mike Strutton of Ironwood shared:
“We may think #ETFs are the big story for #Bitcoin. I believe @Bakkt & “physical” bitcoin futures are going to drive the price – their vision for institutional and consumer retail sounds strong. November will be exciting. Congrats to CEO Kelly Loeffler, woman in crypto.”
Also, read: PwC & NYSE Top Executives Quit to Join BitcoinFirms
Fully collateralized Bitcoin buying & selling
Talking about the widespread need for a trusted infrastructure for storing, spending and trading cryptocurrencies. In order to achieve this, they are working on the “proven framework” comprising of, a consistent regulatory construct, transparent, efficient price discovery, and an institutional quality pre- and post-trade infrastructure.
With a special emphasis on “price discover”, she shares that “trusted price formation is a fundamental part of advancing the promise of digital currencies.” She further talks about not allowing margin or leverage on their contracts stating:
“Specifically, with our solution, the buying and selling of Bitcoin is fully collateralized or pre-funded. As such, our new daily Bitcoin contract will not be traded on margin, use leverage, or serve to create a paper claim on a real asset. This supports market integrity and differentiates our effort from existing futures and crypto exchanges which allow for margin, leverage and cash settlement.”
She further adds:
“Coupled with a secure, regulated warehouse solution, you can begin to see how this market infrastructure can help more institutions and consumers participate in the asset class.”
However, some were quick to point out as did Caitlin Long, a Wall Street veteran,
“Interesting response from @Bakkt today. For #bitcoin this is good news/bad news. First the good–Bakkt disclosed it’s not using margin or leverage (explicitly). That’s positive. But then the bad–it was silent about hidden leverage, which is subtle…”
The blog also points out the fact that the market cap recently dropped below $200 billion but ICOs, corporate R&D and venture investing is still going strong in this arena. This potential has the team excited about the upcoming launch.
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Source: CoinGape