Wealthsimple Crypto launches after 130,000 signed up to waitlist

Robo-advisor trumpets easy-to-use, transparent and safe product, which is now open to investors

Wealthsimple Crypto launches after 130,000 signed up to waitlist

Weathsimple Crypto went live yesterday, with more than 130,000 Canadians having signed on to the waitlist since the product was announced last month.

The digital platform is offering commission-free trading of the two largest cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and Ethereum, through a mobile trading app. The robo-advisor believes it will make a largely complex and inaccessible asset class more inclusive and easy to use. There is no minimum account size, no charges for deposits or withdrawals, and no extra hidden costs.

Wealthsimple CEO Mike Katchen told WP that its primary arim is to be simple and accessible.

He said: “You don’t need to be an expert in cryptocurrency or blockchain to use this platform. It’s geared toward people who are interested in learning more or dipping their toes into crypto trading. The other big one is that the pricing is transparent. The price you see when you tap buy is what you pay — no extra hidden costs. There’s no minimum account size, and we don’t charge for deposits or withdrawals. 

“Our platform is also not limited to Canadian exchanges. In Canada, trading volume of crypto is relatively low. That’s why we’ve also worked with a global partner that consolidates the liquidity of multiple exchanges around the world, so our clients have access to lower prices.”

He added there has been a lot of demand and excitement around the product, and that anyone can now sign up and trade. The platform is Canada’s first regulated crypto trading platform, offers real-time quotes, is available on iOS and Android and has the cryptocurrency custodied at Gemini Trust Company LLC.

Blair Wiley, General Counsel and Head of Regulatory Affairs, Wealthsimple, said another of the product’s main priorities was safety.

He said: “We believe Canadians should have a homegrown, regulated option to safely buy, sell and hold cryptocurrency. For the first time, Canadians can use a crypto platform that’s carefully overseen by regulators, meaning Wealthsimple Crypto will be required to demonstrate that our product is appropriate for clients and that we operate a business that prioritizes investor protection.

“Regulation is one of the aspects of this product that reinforces Wealthsimple’s core mission to provide Canadians with low cost, high quality financial products — in addition to fair, transparent pricing, and secure storage through our third-party custodian.”