The Rockaway Blockchain Fund, a traditional VC focused on investments into blockchain technologies, is announcing investment into the 1inch.exchange – leading aggregator of decentralized exchanges.
Rockaway Blockchain Fund announces another investment in a promising startup – together with Pantera Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners and others, it is investing $20 million in Series B in Wintermute, a professional liquidity provider and market maker for digital assets. For the blockchain fund from the Rockaway Capital family, this is one of the largest investment rounds in which it has participated so far.
Wintermute is a crypto-native market maker, focused on building a decentralized financial system by creating efficient, liquid markets with transparent prices. Since the company’s launch in 2017, the team has become one of the largest liquidity providers in spot markets, covering thousands of pairs over dozens crypto exchanges and trading platforms on CeFi, DeFi and OTC.
“Wintermute proved to be a leading player in the market-making and trading business. Under the leadership of Evgeny Gaevoy, the company is set to become the dominant market-maker on most blockchain based markets. Successful trading and market-making on decentralized exchanges require a special skill set that the team has demonstrated it possesses. We believe that with the rising adoption of digital assets and the rising number of new tokens, the demand for market-making services will skyrocket and Wintermute will be in the forefront of this new demand,” says Viktor Fischer, the Managing Partner at Rockaway Blockchain Fund.
The company has seen tremendous growth in 2020, growing at a monthly rate of 60 % and achieving $30B monthly trading volume by December. Wintermute also provided liquidity for some of the most prominent projects of 2020 and is planning to support many more in 2021. The team has big growth plans for 2021. Wintermute is currently piloting its own RFQ platform with beta counterparties and is planning a launch for institutional players within the first quarter.
“Since we have some of the most competitive pricing in the market, we were literally pulled into this business by our counterparties and partners. The algorithms we use for OTC are the same we use for our proprietary trading, so we have an advantage when it comes to pricing,” says Evgeny Gaevoy, CEO of Wintermute. The company is also looking to scale the derivatives business. “We have historically focused on the spot market, but coming from traditional HFTs like Optiver, we have all the expertise in-house to provide liquidity in derivatives markets across perpetuals, futures and options,” says Gaevoy.
While most of the team is based in London, Wintermute has always operated globally via venues in Asia, US and Europe. The firm believes that with the launch of its RFQ and derivatives businesses, it will also expand its physical presence into Asia. Wintermute plans to open its first international office in Singapore in the first quarter of 2021.
Besides the Rockaway Blockchain Fund, Pantera Capital and Lightspeed Venture Partners, other investors joining the round include Sino Global Capital, Kenetic Capital and Hack VC. Avon Ventures, a venture capital fund affiliated with FMR LLC, the parent company of Fidelity Investments, joined the round too, as did all existing investors, including Blockchain Ventures.