After a three-month slide, the market cap of 100 largest cryptocurrencies reached €349B ($425B) this week. But when trading increases in nascent markets, the availability of cash on hand or an asset that can be readily converted to cash becomes a major challenge. The problem is especially true for the young and inefficient crypto market. Brussels-based startup Keyrock is trying to solve the problem by providing liquidity and market making services to the crypto ecosystem.
The startup raised €900k in a seed round led by Volta Ventures. Other investors include Brussels-based Seeder Fund, Luxembourg-based TNN Capital, and experienced crypto investors. Keyrock plans to use the funding proceeds to accelerate product and business development.
What’s market making?
The U.S SEC (Securities & Exchange Commission) defines a ‘market maker’ as “a firm that stands ready to buy and sell a particular stock on a regular and continuous basis at a publicly quoted price.” In Keyrock’s case, it will deal in cryptocurrencies instead of stocks.
Keyrock’s core job will be to hold inventory of cryptocurrencies currently traded on partner crypto exchanges. It will quote both a ‘buy’ and a ‘sell’ price and make money on the bid-offer spread.
It will directly collaborate with new Blockchain startups conducting ICO (Initial Coin Offering) and crypto exchanges to provide 24/7 access to liquidity. Other than this, it will help new ICO projects in liquidity of their token and help them kick-start trading on new exchanges (most ICO projects fail to secure the listing on any exchange even after raising millions in crowdfunding).
The Keyrock team
Keyrock was founded by Juan David, Jeremy De Groodt, and Kevin de Patoul. Juan David also founded Elium Academy that offers developer boot camps and coding classes whereas Kevin Patoul worked as a consultant for Roland Berger, a global strategy consulting firm headquartered in Munich.
“We are very excited to have Volta Ventures, Seeder Fund, TNN Capital and the angels on board in our mission to create a healthier crypto market. We are convinced blockchain technology will have a great impact in the future and believe the crypto-market will be essential in its mainstream adoption. Just like any market, the crypto market needs transparency, stability and a robust infrastructure to be beneficial and safe for all that wish to take part. Keyrock wants to play an active role in helping the industry reach that level of professionalism,” said Juan, Keyrock CEO and co-founder.
The startup’s lead investor Volta Ventures also sounded enthusiastic about its portfolio company and the services it will provide to the crypto market. “We believe that Keyrock can play an important role in enabling smarter ways of dealing with crypto currencies across exchanges, for the benefit of crypto issuers and investors alike. Best of all, a platform like Keyrock is relevant and necessary independent of the mood swings of the crypto markets,” said Frank Maene, managing partner Volta Ventures.
As the crypto market goes through its cycles of boom, bust, and boom, Blockchain startups are raising funds and forging partnerships. Accident prevention app Safeguard recently partnered (or rather seek help from) with Startupbootcamp to raise €20M in ICO.
Other than Safeguard, Amsterdam-based Unchain last month launched a Blockchain integration platform followed by World’s first Blockchain music streaming speaker Volareo started to award artists via tips in cryptocurrency.
For more updates in the tech startup world, stay tuned to Silicon Canals.