Cowen, a financial services firm, has opened a digital asset division called Cowen Digital. It wants to lead US banks in the growing crypto segment. The new unit would be led by Drew Forman, who has worked as a managing director and head of equity derivatives for the company will offer financial solutions, derivatives, and futures in the future, as well as institutional DeFi and NFT access.
Cowen Digital will also offer custody solutions through the firm’s partnership with PolySign’s Standard Custody and Trust Company. The firm had collaborated with PolySign in May 2021 to offer clients easier access to crypto. Currently, it is trading 16 cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, ether, chainlink, uniswap, polygon, and decentraland.
An institutional crypto trading source highlighted that Cowan has a large custody and clearing business. The firm has hundreds if not thousands of institutional clients that trade through them. The source stated this to be a captive audience. A spokesperson for Cowen said the division of the digital assets meant a huge amount of coordination. The company spent more than a year establishing the unit. The spokesperson outlined that Cowen is more nimble when it comes to entering innovative markets like digital assets. The company is currently trading in 35 states and intends to expand globally.
Banks in the United States are now exploring cryptocurrencies, with Goldman Sachs having just days ago added crypto products. It has partnered with Galaxy Digital Holdings for a first-of-its-kind OTC bitcoin.