Investment bank Cowen launches digital assets division

Investment bank Cowen has launched a digital assets division that will allow institutional customers to trade cryptocurrencies.

The company announced on Wednesday that it will offer “full-service trade execution and custody solutions.”  At this point, customers can trade between 16 tokens, including bitcoin, ethereum, solana, AAVE and USD Coin.

“Through Cowen Digital, our clients now have access to the crypto and digital asset markets with our institutional quality and fully integrated end-to-end execution and custody capabilities,” said Jeffrey Solomon, chairman and CEO of Cowen.

The company has been building up its infrastructure for the past few months ahead of the launch. It has partnered with Standard Custody and PolySign to provide custodial services.

Last year, Standard Custody got a license to operate as a New York state-chartered trust. Around the same time, Cowen invested $25 million in PolySign, the parent company of Standard Custody.

To head the new division, the company tapped Drew Forman, its former managing director and head of equity derivatives.

In the future, Cowen hopes to offer crypto derivatives and futures, as well as access to non-fungible tokens (NTFs).

Like Cowen, other players in the traditional finance segment have been making moves in the digital asset space. Earlier in the week, Goldman Sachs announced its first over-the-counter crypto transaction in the form of a bitcoin non-deliverable option.