Ex-Jefferies Execs, Former Euronext FX CTO To Launch Crypto Exchange

Three former traditional finance executives have teamed up to form the latest cryptocurrency exchange targeting institutional investors. 

Anthony Mazzarese and Brandon Mulvihill, former heads of foreign exchange prime brokerage at Jefferies, have partnered with FastMatch co-founder Vlad Rysin to start Crossover Markets Group.

The co-founders realized the large barriers to entry for traditional institutional clients, such as questions around digital assets custody and the lack of institutional-only venues in the market, Mazzarese told Blockworks.

The business was designed to cater to traditional financial institutions and crypto-native firms looking for low-latency infrastructure, a customizable liquidity experience and 24/7 support. 

“The retail crypto exchanges do a great job of filling some of the gap, but we believe the market is starved for more institutional-only focused counterparties,” Mazzarese said. “The increase in institutional demand is starting to outpace the available supply of viable venues.”

Crossover Markets Group is building its team for its official launch, which is slated for late summer or early fall. The company is finalizing its seed round of funding and plans to do a Series A round later this year.

Both Mazzarese and Mulvihill formerly worked at FXCM, and Mazzarese was previously Citi’s head of foreign exchange margin sales in the Americas.    

Rysin co-founded FastMatch FX, an electronic trading venue in the spot foreign exchange market, in 2012.

Euronext acquired 90% of the company in 2017 for $153 million, and Rysin became the chief technology officer of the combined company. Prior to launching FastMatch, Rysin was the CTO of Credit Suisse’s fixed income clearing corporation division and head of core electronic trading.

“I share the notion that institutional clients entering crypto will require low-latency infrastructure, advanced order logic and deep liquidity in addition to a robust list of coins on offer,” he said in a statement. “While it is still very early for institutional clients joining crypto, we are building our exchange for the future and are excited to become a primary venue for digital assets.”

Institutional clients are not used to trading on cloud-based or locally hosted technology with limited support, Mazzarese said. They require response times measured in microseconds and reliable trade confirmations.

Rysin’s experience in building ultra-low latency exchanges for large financial institutions will allow Crossover Markets Group to come to the market with one of the fastest and most robust matching engines in crypto, he said. 

“Our decision to build our product from scratch allows us to use the most cutting-edge technology, rather than rely on legacy tech that could be 10 or 15 years old already,” Mazzarese said. “We believe this is truly our differentiator.”

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