CoinDesk reports that Netagio plans to get out of the gold business by the end of this year, instead focusing on its GBP and EUR-based trading offerings.
Recall that gold was the cornerstone of Netagio’s business. The company launched as an offshoot of GoldMoney, a precious metals storage service, leveraging its parent’s capabilities to do the same for bitcoin with cold storage. Thereafter, it was one of the first to offer bitcoin-for-gold trading.
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It then launched its GBP-based offering, followed by an an API as it continued to shift focus from storage to trading. CEO Simon Hamblin commented that there’s more opportunity for its GBP-based offering, noting the scarcity of full-fledged GBP-based exchanges- Kraken is one of the few to introduce such. Instead, most BTC/GBP traders take to over-the-counter (OTC) venues such as Localbitcoins and Bittylicious.
Netagio had previously marketed its offerings by noting similarities between gold and bitcoin, such as their limited supply and potential to serve as a store of value. Interestingly, gold and bitcoin have both slumped in 2014. Gold hit a multi-year low below $1150 earlier this month, while bitcoin’s 52-week return is now officially negative. It is uncertain, however, if the weak markets played a role in softening Netagio’s BTC/gold market or if the latter would have progressed regardless.
A hallmark trait of dynamic, successful companies has been to agilely evolve their product line, shifting away from outdated offerings. Netagio’s move is therefore a positive step, but challenges still abound in a highly saturated market.