Home > News > Citadel to foray into crypto as CEO Griffith changes his mind on the asset class

Citadel to foray into crypto as CEO Griffith changes his mind on the asset class

  • Citadel Securities chief Ken Griffith admitted he got his assessment of cryptocurrencies
  • He also added Citadel plans to become a market maker in crypto in the coming months

Founder and CEO of investment firm Citadel Securities Ken Griffith has finally capitulated and now taken a much softer stance on crypto. An outspoken naysayer, the 53-year-old has, on constant occasions in the past, expressed his distaste for crypto finance and refused to acknowledge it.

Speaking during a recent instalment of the Bloomberg Wealth with financier David Rubenstein yesterday, Griffith explored a breadth of subject matters, including the Ukraine situation, the chaotic market, and sanctions.

He has come round but is not yet entirely convinced 

Responding to a question from David Rubenstein, the billionaire hedge fund manager observed that crypto has significantly evolved over the last 15 years. To that end, he acknowledged that his initial assessment of the asset had not been accurate, citing the $2 trillion market cap that crypto markets have accrued.

"And I'll be clear, I've been in the naysayer camp over that period of time. But the crypto market today has a market capitalisation of about $2 trillion in round numbers, which tells you that I haven't been right on this call," he said.

He added that even though he remains cynical, millions of people worldwide think otherwise, inferring to the growing adoption of crypto assets. Following the change of tune, he said that Citadel is now considering becoming a market maker in crypto, which he says the investment firm could get into over the next few months.

"To the extent that we're trying to help institutions and investors solve their portfolio allocation problems, we have to give serious consideration to being a market maker in crypto. It's fair to assume that over the months to come, you will see us engage in making markets in cryptocurrencies."

An interesting past with the community

The hedge fund manager has a controversial history with crypto, to say the least. As a majority owner of America's largest market maker, it is fair to conclude that his constant jabs on crypto reiterated the existing boundary between traditional finance and the growing financial tech options in the world today, crypto.

The Citadel CEO has in the past made "jihadist call" comments regarding the 'attempt' to replace the US dollar with crypto. Last October, Griffin told the Economic Club of Chicago that he would rather the "passion and energy that went to crypto" be directed into building the country.

He was also the buyer who outbid Constitution DAO last November for a rare copy of the US Constitution. Griffin offered $3.2 million more than the DAO did to take home the historical artefact, which he apparently lent out to an art museum.

Not that what he did was wrong in any way, but the crypto community wasn't happy with his swoop.

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