A London startup has raised $2.8 million to build a range of cryptocurrency funds for professional investors.

Old Street Digital, which aims to bring the best of active, fundamental research-driven portfolio management to crypto, has been backed by a network of top executives in the European asset management industry.

The funding round was led by Draper Associates and included participation from Plassa Capital as well as venture capital and angel investors across Europe, Asia and the US. 

“There is enormous opportunity for institutional investors in digital assets but they need a credible product offering from experienced professionals they can trust,” said Paul Ridley, CEO. 

“We’re building a crypto asset manager to fill this gap with a range of actively-managed funds in an accessible fund structure.” 

Old Street Digital’s first fund launches this quarter and the firm expects to open another in Q4.

Chief investment officer Gary Clarke is one of Europe’s most prominent equity portfolio managers. An investor for 27 years, Clarke previously held senior roles at leading fund managers including head of global equities at Blackrock, where he oversaw $31 billion in client assets, head of European equities at Schroders and head of thematic investing at J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

“Old Street Digital’s unique approach applies traditional fund-management expertise to the world of crypto,” said Tim Draper, founding partner, Draper Associates. 

“The Old Street Digital team is well-positioned to provide access to a range of research-backed, crypto-based investment funds, and we at Draper Associates are excited to support them.”

Cryptocurrency shorts

The US Treasury Department has imposed sanctions on Tornado Cash, a cryptocurrency ‘mixer’ which says it protects users’ privacy. It is alleged that Tornado Cash has helped launder more than $7 billion in stolen crypto funds since its inception in 2019. USDC and ETH addresses connected to Tornado Cash have been sanctioned, while links to its GitHub account and website have been taken down and its email disabled.

A report from CoinShares shows institutional investors have increasingly backed Ether-based digital asset funds over the last seven weeks ahead of the September Merge which will move Ethereum from a proof-of-work to a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism – making it more secure, energy efficient and environmentally friendly.

Cashmere, a company that offers enterprise wallet management for users of the Solana blockchain, has closed a $3m seed funding round featuring Coinbase Ventures and FBG Capital, as well as startup incubator Y Combinator.

Coinfirm, a blockchain analytics and RegTech provider, is announcing a collaboration with crypto-native game platform CoinClash which will allow the latter to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism, keeping in compliance with AML guidelines.

Crypto prices

The overall market cap of the more than 20,500 coins is at $1.13 trillion at the time of writing (7am UK), a 1.6% increase in the last 24 hours.

Market leader Bitcoin – the original cryptocurrency created by the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto – gained 2% to $23,900. BTC is 4% up in a week.

Ethereum, the second most valuable crypto coin – created as a decentralised network for smart contracts on the blockchain – rose 3% to $1,775. ETH is 12% up over the course of a week.

Binance Coin is a cryptocurrency created by popular crypto exchange Binance to assist its aim in becoming the infrastructure services provider for the entire blockchain ecosystem. Its BNB token lost 0.5% to $326, leaving it 18% up over seven days.

The XRP token of Ripple, a payment settlement asset exchange and remittance system, acts as a bridge for transfers between other currencies. XRP grew slightly to 37.7 cents, with its price 2% up on seven days ago.

Cardano is an open source network facilitating dApps which considers itself to be an updated version of Ethereum. Its ADA token, designed to allow owners to participate in the operation of the network, shed 0.5% to 53.5c and is 8% up in a week.

Solana is a blockchain built to make decentralised finance accessible on a larger scale – and capable of processing 50,000 transactions per second. Its SOL token climbed 0.5% to $42.60 and is 5% higher than its price a week ago.

Polkadot was founded by the Swiss-based Web3 Foundation as an open-source project to develop a decentralised web. Its DOT token, which aims to securely connect blockchains, grew 4% to $9.22 and is 18% up on its price a week ago.

Meme coin DOGE was created as a satire on the hype surrounding cryptocurrencies but is now a major player in the space. DOGE added 2% to 7.1c and is 8% up over seven days.

Avalanche is a lightning-quick verifiable platform for institutions, enterprises and governments. Its AVAX token grew 1% to $28.74 and is 27% up in a week.

Polygon aims to securely connect blockchains as a sort of decentralised internet. Its MATIC token remained at 93c, while it is 8% up in a week.

For valuations of the top 100 coins by market cap in US dollars, plus 24-hour price change, see below.