Fireblocks came out of stealth Tuesday morning, announcing it has raised $16 million in Series A funding from firms including Fidelity-backed Eight Roads and MState. The cryptocurrency security startup helps institutions safely transfer coins between different wallets and exchanges and already has two high-profile customers: Genesis Global Trading, owned by Barry Silbert’s Digital Currency Group, and Michael Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital.
If Fireblocks CEO Michael Shaulov succeeds, he’ll help blaze the trail that enterprises and institutional investors need to make transactions quickly and carefully. Fireblocks is launching as a platform that serves specialized firms trading digital assets, but its technology could also provide the foundation of security and transparency that makes America’s biggest banks more comfortable with cryptocurrencies in the future.
“It basically provides institutional investors a simple and secure way to transfer assets from their account to any account that they have on other exchanges,” Shaulov said. “You can think about it like we created the Swift for crypto. You can transfer from your Bank of America account to your Citibank account to your JPMorgan account, but no one can go to the ATM, withdraw your funds and run away with them.”
Shaulov, who sold his first cybersecurity startup called Lagoon Mobile Security to Check Point Software Technologies in 2015, was inspired to start the company after he helped investigate North Korean hacks that stole more than $500 million worth of cryptocurrencies in 2017 and 2018 as a leader on Check Point’s cloud security team.
Shaulov took a multilayered approach to securing crypto transactions, wanting to keep assets stored in users’ wallets safe while also protecting assets in transit by eliminating the need for cumbersome login credentials and…