Blockchain Launches the Fastest Crypto Exchange in the World to Level the Playing Field for Retail Investors Firm unveils The PIT, the first-microsecond crypto trading platform with institutional liquidity and unmatched reliability London, July 30, 2019 – Blockchain, the leading provider of cryptocurrency products and creator of the world’s most popular crypto wallet is launching The PIT, the first microsecond-latency crypto exchange. The institutional-grade platform fills the void for a reliable, fast, and liquid marketplace where all investors can trade crypto fairly.
After extensive R&D, the custom “Mercury” matching engine delivers speeds a quantum faster than any other crypto exchange. The exchange is available to users in more than 200 countries, will begin with 26 trading pairs, and an expansive global banking network to facilitate deposits, withdrawals, and fiat-to-crypto trading in USD, EUR, and GBP. Initial assets include BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, USDT, and PAX, with plans to rapidly add additional tokens, pairs, and products in the near term.
The PIT will launch with the support of a diverse, global group of leading market markers backed by a deep lending pool. Blockchain is committed to providing a first-class institutional market and will never trade against its clients or give itself superior access to the market.
“The current crypto exchange market is outdated, broken, and skewed against users. We got tired of waiting for a new entrant to deliver the performance today’s traders demand,” says Peter Smith, Co-founder, and CEO of Blockchain. “We decided to take matters into our own hands, and built an exchange that puts users first, including the 40M wallets on our platform.”
Over the last year, a stealth team inside the company composed of veterans from NYSE, TD Ameritrade, Google, Goldman Sachs, UBS, Interactive Brokers, and Revolut, built The PIT to be lighting fast, fair, and reliable.
“We’re incredibly lucky to have assembled a world-class team who have been heads-down building The PIT for the past year. The ‘PIT Crew’ as we call them, has an unmatched level of technical skills and the domain expertise required to develop a product of this caliber,” says Smith.
Nicole Sherrod, the firm’s previously unannounced Head of Trading Products, joined Blockchain last July to lead product development of The PIT. She previously led the active trading product division at TD Ameritrade, the world’s largest online broker. Her experience running global trading platforms at TD Ameritrade and E*Trade have been invaluable in translating institutional trading technology to retail crypto investors.
“I’ve dedicated my career to championing the retail investor and giving them a powerful trading experience that is not only fair but provides an edge,” says Sherrod. “When Peter approached me with his vision for The PIT, I realized this was an even greater impact on retail crypto traders everywhere.”
Tom Haller, previously the Chief Software Architect for trading systems at the New York Stock Exchange, led the development of the exchange’s matching engine.
“Whereas most cryptocurrency exchanges run alongside slow, consumer applications in the cloud, The PIT leverages best practices from Wall Street to facilitate rapid, efficient, and high-quality trade execution at HFT speeds,” says Haller.
By hosting its proprietary, microsecond matching engine in Equinix LD4, one of the fastest and most reliable low-latency data centers in the world, The PIT delivers peerless reliability and performance regardless of market conditions.
“GSR is proud to partner with Blockchain.com to provide liquidity to The PIT. This project has been developed by an accomplished team with demonstrated experience in managing one of the largest userbases of crypto traders. The crypto ecosystem needs more exchanges that are striving for institutional-grade architecture, decreased latency, and more robust liquidity.
We look forward to playing our part in developing The PIT into one of the leading trading venues,” says Cristian Gil, Co-Founder, GSR, a leading market maker.
This infrastructure underpins a front-end trading interface that allows users to customize the simplicity or sophistication of their experience, ensuring they’ll always have the right level of market insight.
Through a new feature called Blockchain Connect, more than 40M Blockchain Wallets can seamlessly link and transfer crypto to and from their PIT account, enabling users to retain maximum control over their crypto through a single, trusted provider. Blockchain is offering the first ten thousand users that fund their accounts fee-free
trading for the first 30 days. To enter The PIT, visit pit.blockchain.com.
Blockchain is connecting the world to the future of finance. We are one of the most trusted and fastest-growing digital assets companies, helping millions across the globe –from individuals to the largest institutions – get easy and safe access to cryptocurrency. Blockchain has raised over $70 million in funding from leading investors including Lightspeed Venture Partners and Google Ventures. Board members include former Barclays CEO Antony Jenkins, Lightspeed Ventures Partner Jeremy Liew, and former Skype COO Michael Jackson. (www.blockchain.com/press).
What makes The PIT different from other crypto exchanges:
The Fastest Machine Engine in Crypto That velocity isn’t like the top speed on a sports car that you’ll never reach without breaking more than a few traffic laws. It’s tangible, and immensely important when volatility spikes, news breaks, and the market is flooded with orders.
It’s the difference between maximizing your profits at the start of a 10% plummet and taking the full weight of that loss on your holdings. The difference between fair, orderly markets and manipulable, chaotic platforms.
In short, speed is the key to unlocking the vast potential of trading cryptocurrencies. It’s the beginning and the end. The Alpha and Omega. And for too long, it’s been missing.
Peerless Reliability and World-Class Infrastructure
Raise your hand if you’ve tried to make a trade only to find that the exchange holding your assets was down? Or if you’ve placed an order only to have it linger on the market and not fill, even when the market reaches your hit price?
Most of the time, this comes down to exchanges cutting corners to save costs, instead of upgrading to institutional-grade infrastructure.
From the first meeting of The PIT Crew, reliability was a cornerstone of the platform, just as it’s always been for over 40M Blockchain Wallets.
As opposed to hosting our exchange in the cloud alongside slow, consumer applications like many exchanges, our’s is hosted in Equinix LD4, one of the most reliable and lowest-latency data centers in the world. LD4 is the computing infrastructure underpinning many of Europe’s largest global finance, technology, and media companies.
We can assure you, it isn’t cheap or easy to stand-up technology in LD4, but we’ll never settle for anything less than world-class technology.
Institutional Liquidity Provided by Leading Market Makers
When it comes to liquidity, you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone. As too many of us discovered in late 2018, what seemed like deep pools of liquidity across major venues wound up being thin puddles that evaporated in seconds.
Spreads widened from cents to chasms. Trades failed. Order books halted.
To ensure that would never happen on traders in The PIT, we hit the pavement to negotiate and secure agreements with global market makers to provide constant, streaming liquidity on our exchange. With these market makers already on-boarded, traders will have access to
actionable liquidity for 26 trading pairs of fiat-to-crypto and crypto-to-crypto from day one.
So if you’re in the market for $100 or $100K, you can trade when you want, not just when you can.
Accessible to Traders of Any Sophistication
Crypto exchanges too often try to pass off complexity as the power of their product. Overwhelming users with a long list of order types, charts, and niche data, without options for users to customize their interface.
The PIT’s user interface enables traders across the entire spectrum of sophistication to achieve the right amount of market insight for their needs. With just the right amount of order types and multiple dashboards for price graphs and charting packs, you’re equipped to discover and act on your strategy.
If traders have any questions, our dedicated user operations team will ensure user success with its deep trading experience and market structure knowledge.
Connected to Global Banking, but Empowers Non-Custodial Services
One of the persistent challenges through the first decade of crypto has been the existence and reliability of the on and off-ramps for fiat. It’s a challenge that isn’t going away soon, but we’ve developed an extensive global banking network across the EU, UK, and the US to ensure users can easily and securely fund their trading accounts with fiat.
There are very few exchanges in the world with those capabilities. And even fewer, if any, that will hold themselves to the core DNA of cryptocurrencies empowering financial sovereignty.
We’re thrilled to be bringing this exchange to you all, but our devout belief that non-custodial services will be the future of finance has never, and will never take a backseat.
To ensure and encourage users to maximize control of their private keys, we’ve created a seamless connection function to link Blockchain Wallets with trading accounts on The PIT for easy deposits and swift withdrawals into their non-custodial wallet.
Peter Smith, CEO, and Co-founder of Blockchain Under Peter’s leadership, Blockchain has grown to be the leading software provider for cryptocurrencies globally and creator of the most popular consumer wallet. He recruited, built and led The PIT crew to create an exchange that would deliver the performance today’s traders demand, and put users first.
Nicole Sherrod, Head of Retail Products Nicole has dedicated her career to championing the retail investor by developing powerful,
award-winning trading platforms at some of the largest retail trading firms in the world, including TD Ameritrade and E*TRADE. She secretly joined Blockchain in July 2018 to lead product development for The PIT, and level the playing field for crypto’s retail investors.
Tom Haller, Head of Exchange Engineering Tom is one of the world’s foremost experts on matching technology. He designed and built
Blockchain’s custom matching engine, “Mercury,” to re-define matching technology in cryptocurrencies. He was previously the Chief Software Architect for the NYSE, and responsible for the entire trading platform of Archipelago, one of the forerunners of electronic trading.
Charles McGarraugh, Head of Markets Charlie is a capital markets veteran and tech entrepreneur. He joined blockchain through its acquisition of Stratagem, where he was CEO. He previously held various senior trading roles as a partner at Goldman Sachs, most recently as Global Head of Metals.
Peter Wilson, VP of Engineering Peter was a staple on the Seattle tech scene as an executive at Microsoft, Google, and Facebook, but left the world of FAANGs to join Blockchain and the crypto ecosystem as our Vice President of Engineering. He’s been vital to coordinating global engineering efforts, strategy, and resourcing that have built The PIT from day one.
Lewis Tuff, Head of Platform Engineering Lewis has been developing the infrastructure and platforms driving global institutions like UBS and Goldman Sachs, and emerging disruptors like Revolut for almost a decade. As Head of Platform Engineering at Blockchain, Lewis has led the development of the foundation for fast, global, and high-volume trading in The PIT.
Thianh Lu, Head of Product Design Thianh has been designing, managing, and founding products in Silicon Valley for over a decade, back to his time at Zecco, which was a predecessor of the latest innovations in mobile retail trading. He joined Blockchain through the acquisition of Tsukemen, where he was CEO and Co-Founder, and designed The PIT to have an accessible and customizable interface for all users.
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Description: Blockchain Launches the Fastest Crypto Exchange in the World to Level the Playing Field for Retail Investors Firm unveils The PIT, the first-microsecond crypto trading platform with institutional liquidity and unmatched reliability London, July 30, 2019
The startup is waiving trading fees for the first 30 days. After that, in addition to the spread, you’ll pay 0.24% in taker fees if you trade less than $100,000 per month, and 0.14% in maker fees. Fees get lower after that threshold, but you should probably consider an OTC desk for large transactions.
That’s 0.01 percentage point lower than Coinbase Pro fees, 0.02 percentage point lower than Kraken fees if you trade less than $50,000 per month and on par with Kraken fees if you trade between $50,000-$100,000. Binance fees are lower, but I don’t think The Pit and Binance address the same market.
Integration with Blockchain wallets will foster adoption compared to other companies starting an exchange from scratch. Blockchain users have created 40 million wallets so far. And those users can connect to The Pit using their Blockchain account. The company has developed a new Blockchain Connect API for this feature.
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