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NomuraBacked Digital asset Custodian Komainu Raises 25 mln

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LONDON, March 9 Reuters Komainu, the digital asset custodian backed by Japanese investment bank Nomura Holdings Inc , has raised 25 million in a funding round led by veteran hedge fund manager Alan Howard, the company said on Tuesday.

Other investors in the round included Galaxy Digital, NOIA Capital and Nomura Research Institute, which will act as strategic partners to the custodian, Komainu said.

Howard is the cofounder of investment firms Brevan Howard, and most recently blockchain and cryptocurrencyfocused Elwood Asset Management.

Komainu, which safeguards bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies on behalf of financial institutions was launched last June as a joint venture between Nomura, digital asset security firm Ledger, and digital asset investment house CoinShares.

It has more than 3 billion in assets under custody and will use the funding to grow its team, develop new technology and expand geographically, Komainu President Henson Orser said in an interview.

The funding round comes amid a rally in bitcoins price, as more institutional investors warm to the virtual currency which many see as a hedge against inflation.

Having first established Komainu in 2018, Nomura was one of the earliest large financial institutions looking to offer services in the nascent asset class. Since then more mainstream firms have entered or announced cryptocurrency moves including Fidelity and Bank of New York Mellon Corp.

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