2018, the year of crypto and the year of unkept promises!
Mainstream media outlets covering stories on Bitcoin, regulators actively participating in the market, institutional investors sentiment pouring in, and also the year that marked the end of Bitconnect and several other ‘scammy’ projects.
In short, crypto was everywhere, irrespective of whether it was there in the positive limelight or negative. And throughout the year, there were three questions that constantly made a buzz in the market. When moon? When Bitcoin ETF? and When institutional investors?
At the start of 2018, the market was in the spotlight for its meteoric rise, while towards the end, it made headlines for its steep decline. Several proposals were made to the SEC with the prospect of getting an approval for an exchange-traded fund, but everything was in vain. Institutional players promised to step in and change the entire show but were subjected to regulatory approval, failing to make a debut by the year-end.
Beginning of Bakkt
One such institutional player was Bakkt. The crypto-venture of Intercontinental Exchange. The company made the announcement of playing the crypto game in mid-2018, with the commitment of launching fully regulated Bitcoin futures that would be physically settled. It only took a matter of seconds for this news to spread like a wildfire in the space, with several investors and influencers preaching the impact the institutional player was going to have on the Bitcoin market, especially its price.
Why did Bakkt make the noise it did in the market? Simple, because of its parent company, ICE. Intercontinental Exchange has already established a strong foothold in the traditional financial markets, standing at the apex.
The American company led by Jeffrey Sprecher owned and operated 12 regulated exchanges and marketplaces including the New York Stock Exchange.