- Robinhood Crypto currently lets users buy seven different coins.
- The team is growing in an effort to meet demand.
- Robinhood tapped Christine Brown to be COO.
Robinhood Crypto, the digital assets subsidiary of Robinhood Markets, LLC, has named its first chief operating officer.
Christine Brown, currently Robinhood’s VP of Product Operations, will take on the newly created role. Brown joined the startup in April 2017 after stints with Google and Udacity.
“For the past few years, I’ve been focused on building traditional financial infrastructure, but I’ve always been fascinated with cryptocurrency and its potential to create a more open financial system,” said Brown in a press release.
Brown, an experienced product and product operations manager, takes the helm of the company’s cryptocurrency arm at a key time for its growth. At the moment, it offers just seven tokens: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin SV, Dogecoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Litecoin. Compare that to the dozens, if not hundreds, available on traditional exchanges.
Yet, given Robinhood’s popularity among retail investors as a cheap and easy place to buy stocks and other assets, the crypto wing has still struggled at times to meet demand. In echoes of the GameStop trading halt earlier this year, the company’s crypto trading service went down last week as Dogecoin ascended, jumping nearly 600% in just days. According to the company, the site outage stemmed from “unprecedented” trading volume.
The growing pains have led the company to triple the crypto team’s size this year and work toward adding “deposit and withdrawal features” via a wallet—something traders have been clamoring for so that they have more control over their funds.
If Brown’s appointment is any indication, it’s looking to do more. With popular crypto exchange Coinbase going public—and Kraken taking steps to follow it—there’s increasing competition among crypto trading apps.
That’s something Robinhood CEO and co-founder Vlad Tenev is aware of. “Robinhood Crypto customers are reshaping the investing landscape and Christine is going to do great things leading this team at a time of tremendous growth across the industry,” he said.
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