Hardware wallet manufacturers Ledger and Trezor both reported a huge spike in sales last week as consumers rushed to self-custody solutions to safeguard their digital assets.
Hardware crypto wallets keep users’ private keys stored securely offline. Unlike software wallets, they're mostly immune to online attacks, though they’re not entirely impenetrable and have been targeted by phishing attacks before.
Still, in an unregulated industry where lenders and centralized exchanges with opaque finances can and do sequester people’s funds without a moment’s notice or mishandle them, many see devices like Ledger and Trezor as a cut above the alternatives.
And last week’s sales figures suggest the same.
Trezor, Ledger boast booming sales
CEO Pascal Gauthier confirmed recent reports with Decrypt that the firm had enjoyed a hefty uptick in sales.
"Last week saw Ledger's highest sales week in history. Sunday was our single highest day of sales ever. Until Monday, when we beat our all-time high again,” said Pascal via email. “The message is clear: people are realizing that we must return to decentralization and to self-custody. ‘Not your keys, not your coins.’ A saying as old as crypto itself, but it has never been more relevant."
Decrypt also emailed Ledger’s main competitor Trezor who reported a similar surge in demand.
Joseph Tetek analyst at Trezor said that the wallet manufacturer had “indeed seen an exponential increase in sales since November 7.”
“While we welcome the surge in interest in self-storage solutions, we are not happy that the current surge in demand is the result of a massive loss of funds on FTX,” he added.
Rise of the DEX
Another self-custody solution that has been on the rise since last week is the decentralized exchange, known by the acronym DEX.
DEXs accounted for $31 billion of crypto trades over the last week, according to statistics by Dune.
The fever pitch began Tuesday, the same day Binance announced it had signed a non-binding agreement to bail out FTX for an undisclosed amount.
Many exchanges posted an overnight doubling in trade volumes in the 24 hours following the announcement, including the most popular DEX, Uniswap, which saw more than triple the volume.
Just a day before, trading volume had been nearly $1.3 billion—a more or less average day at Uniswap over the last month. However, in the wake of the bailout news, volumes spiked to just over $4.2 billion.
If there’s one immediate silver lining to FTX’s downfall, it’s that the industry is no longer blindly trusting centralized custodians.
Now, buzzwords like “security” and “self-custody” are coming to the fore.