Robinhood is looking to penetrate the crypto market and increase its staff strength, according to CEO Vlad Tenev.
The disclosure was made in a fireside chat session posted on the company’s YouTube account. Tenev fielded questions from customers on their growth plans.
Crypto Wallets on the Horizon
In response, Tenev said the company was actively looking into expanding its cryptocurrency business. This would include adding new trading pairs for the rapidly-expanding crypto industry. He also said they plan on beefing up their staff capacity in the coming months to support their growth.
Another possible roll-out from the online stockbroking platform could be a cryptocurrency wallet for digital asset storage.
Tenev was quick to point out this is a slow process. He said the broker was not in a hurry to bring this service to market, and it would take a while before development picks up.
Zero-fee trading platform Robinhood allows customers to purchase cryptocurrencies on its app. The tech company is home to millions of customers, the majority of who are millennials.
Robinhood customers can purchase popular digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum on the platform. However, they can’t deposit or transfer their cryptocurrencies.
Despite this handicap, Robinhood has been able to hold its own in the crypto market. In a February release by the company, Robinhood announced a 6 million growth in its crypto user base, up from 401,000 in the same month last year.
The company also posted an average transaction size of $500 for each new user.
In speaking about expanding its seven tradable coins to more, the Robinhood CEO said the company is presently searching for fresh minds to support its growing customer needs. Tenev said the increased workforce would cater to such issues as increased network traffic and ensure the platform keeps running during peak transactions.
Robinhood Gets Bad Publicity
Outside of its impressive numbers, 2021 has been a tumultuous year for Robinhood. And it all starts and ends with the GameStop saga. On Jan. 28, Robinhood froze investors’ trades for struggling video game retailer GameStop.
The decision was taken after the popular subreddit community members of r/WallStreetBets began buying up GameStop shares to spite big hedge funds who shorted it. The buying frenzy saw Robinhood restrict the trading of GameStop, AMC, and Nokia shares.
Following this decision by the company, several lawmakers criticized the move, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who called for Congressional oversight. Affected investors also filed a class-action lawsuit against the company bringing more bad publicity to the brokerage firm.
“We’re doing as much as we can to get the true story out there. I think there is going to be some documentaries and some movies that will help blast it out to a wider audience. But part of it’s also like people love these stories and the fake, simple story is more interesting than kind of like the true, boring complicated story,” Tenev explained.