Source: Bboys/Adobe

The Japanese tradfi giant Nomura is set to launch crypto trading platform for professional traders by early 2023 – as the firm looks to ramp up its crypto operations.

Nomura recently announced the launch of a crypto-focused firm named Laser Digital. This new subsidiary also operates a sub-unit named Laser Venture Capital. This body, the company said, will back projects in the decentralized finance (DeFi), centralized finance (CeFi), Web3, and blockchain spaces.

Per CoinPost, Laser Digital hopes to have its trading services up and running by March next year.

Laser Digital said it would be targeting institutional investors with its new platform, as well as high-net-worth individuals. The firm will also offer its services to crypto-keen family offices and hedge funds.

However, the company added that its move into regional markets would depend on regulatory progress. In a LinkedIn post, the company’s Chief Operating Officer Oliver Dang wrote that the company plans to hire tens of new staff members “by next year.”

Dang added that the subsidiary would have “trading and systematic market making” services “in spot and derivatives” “ready in 1Q [of 2023].”

He added that an “asset management product” was also forthcoming and that the firm was “initially” operating from Zurich, Dubai, and London.

Over a week ago, Laser Venture Capital announced it had made an investment in the Near blockchain network-based Orderly Network DeFi project.

Nomura has also invested in the British blockchain payments firm Fnality.

Japanese Tradfi Players Continue Crypto Pivot

Nomura, primarily a banking firm, has had an eye on the crypto space for some time. In 2020, the company indicated that it was ready to move into the crypto custody space.

A number of other major Japanese tradfi players have already moved into the crypto sector.

These include the securities and banking firm SBI, which now has crypto exchange and coin mining arms. Another notable example is the Monex Group – a securities firm that is hoping to launch its crypto exchange, Coincheck, on the NASDAQ exchange next year.

Coincheck 1-year trading volumes. (Source: CoinGecko)

The credit card giant JCB, meanwhile, is focusing on central bank digital currencies.

The card-issuing company is running pilots it hopes will allow JCB to develop compatibility with the Bank of Japan’s digital yen prototype.

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