(Bloomberg) -- Citigroup Inc.’s venture capital investing group made its first digital asset seed investment in a Hong Kong-based digital-asset management firm.
Citi Ventures co-led a $6 million initial capital financing round for xalts, which was co-founded by a former trader at HSBC Holdings and a former executive at Meta Platforms Inc. Accel, the Palo Alto, California-based venture-capital firm that has funded technology companies that include Facebook and Spotify, was the other firm that co-led the funding round. Citi Ventures didn’t disclose the amount it invested. Polygon co-founder Sandeep Nailwal and other hedge fund managers were also investors.
Xalts is seeking to take advantage of what it said is increased institutional participation in the digital asset ecosystem even after this year’s plunge in the prices of cryptocurrencies. The firm aims to launch multiple fund products linked to digital assets, including mutual funds and ETFs listed on global exchanges.
“The world has changed a lot, you know with the macro environments and obviously markets have been suffering as a result of that,” Luis Valdich, a managing director at Citi Ventures, said in an interview. “Obviously we are very prudent in terms of where to and how to deploy capital, but we’re absolutely active with lots of opportunities not only outside of digital assets, but also within the digital asset space, which we believe is here to stay.”
Ashutosh Goel, co-founder and chief investment officer of xalts, said in an interview that his firm is expanding to multiple locations including Dubai, Singapore and New Delhi. Former Meta Asia executive Supreet Kaur is the other co-founder.
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