Peer-to-peer crypto trading platform BitMEX is considering to expand its services by launching a cryptocurrency options platform.
The prospect was revealed on April 12 by Arther Hayes, the co-founder and CEO of BitMEX, during a podcast interview on the Venture Coinist.
“We hope to possibly have our own options platform in maybe 12 to 18 months,” Hayes said.
Options, just like futures, is a financial instrument which allows traders to hedge on the future price of an asset. However, unlike futures, traders holding options are not obligated to buy or sell the asset – they can back out from the deal only by paying a small fee.
Though the CEO did not reveal details about the upcoming platform, he hinted about the development process of the crypto options platform.
“We have somebody working with some university professors on a complicated new way of doing this,” Hayes added.
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Founded in 2014, BitMEX has become one of the largest crypto exchanges with around $1.1 million in daily trading volume, and with the upcoming platform, it is trying to challenge the dominance of its competitor Deribit in the crypto futures and options market.
Apart from that, Hayes, a former Citigroup trader, also made some bullish remarks on Bitcoin despite a reigning bear market. He predicted that Bitcoin’s value might touch $50,000 in the next two to five years.
Pushing crypto towards the mainstream
Moreover, he also stated that he will introduce a Bitcoin-backed short term bond on BitMEX, allowing the purchase of S&P 500 and Nasdaq QQQ indices with Bitcoin.
“I want to create a future where the highest quality exchanges and miners… issue short-term Bitcoin bonds to the ecosystem,” Hayes added.
“Hopefully, by summer of this year, you’ll be able to use Bitcoin and purchase the S&P 500 and Nasdaq QQQ indices… and essentially, you won’t have Bitcoin-USD risk. You’ll send bitcoin. They’ll FX it into dollars, and allow you to buy a swap. And when you want to leave, you’ll sell the swap, get back dollars, and then you can get back your bitcoin.”
Earlier this year, BitMEX faced some backlash as reports surfaced that it is closing the accounts of its clients based in the United States and the Canadian province of Quebec following a regulatory crackdown. The exchange, however, denied all such claims.