Bittrex, a major US-based cryptocurrency exchange, has rolled out an over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk, which allows the execution of block transactions on a large variety of crypto and fiat pairs. Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara revealed that the new service would be available only for ‘approved customers,’ covering nearly all 200 tokens on the platform.
The Bittrex OTC desk, which facilitates dealing between trade parties directly, instead of relying on the supervision of an exchange, joins similar services at other top US crypto businesses.
Coinbase, Poloniex, Gemini, and Circle started their over-the-counter trading operations earlier last year. The OTC business complements those exchanges’ underlying services as many institutions were already using OTC as a proxy for crypto trading.
Despite its prolonged winter, the move shows how the cryptocurrency space is maturing in a similar way to the $5 trillion foreign exchange market.
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How does it work?
The new platform offers deeper liquidity, with a minimum entry-point of $250,000, to customers needing to fill large orders, including guaranteed pricing for certain block trades.
Over-the-counter, or OTC, trading will be done directly on digital assets supported on the Bittrex platform. Bittrex would act typically as an agency and earn commission by executing client trades.
Approved clients can call Bittrex support to submit their block order. The exchange finds willing buyers and sellers without tipping off the market that a big order is coming. Bittrex will then get price quotes for the client who, in this case, needs to confirm that he accepts the offered settlement price for the transaction. In the last step, the OTC desk will execute the trade and settle funds or cryptocurrency into Bittrex’s account within 48 hours of receiving the client’s deposit.
Commenting on the news, Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara, said: “We’re excited to offer this new, game-changing trading option for our customers. With one of the most extensive selections of digital assets of any OTC desk available, this offering will be another way for Bittrex to further advance [the] adoption of blockchain technology worldwide, while also providing our customers with price certainty and a fast and easy way to trade large blocks of digital assets.”