Gemini Buys Omniex in Trading Expansion Push

US-based cryptocurrency custody and exchange Gemini has made its latest acquisition, with the company purchasing the trading technology startup, Omniex.

  • Gemini announced the news of the acquisition in a blog post on Wednesday (January 19, 2022). According to the exchange platform, Omniex will be integrated into Gemini Prime, which was publicly launched following the acquisition.
  • Prior to the latest development, Gemini Prime was only accessible to a select number of customers in the past year.
  • The product is designed to make trading easier for institutional investors by providing access to multiple exchanges and over-the-counter (OTC) liquidity sources trading transparency, among others.
  • Meanwhile, Gemini Prime is scheduled to launch in the second quarter of 2022. An excerpt from the exchange’s announcement reads:

“There has been unprecedented demand among institutional investors for access to the full breadth of the digital asset ecosystem over the past year and Gemini has been building an institutional business focused on providing the best crypto trading technology available. […] The integration of Omniex’s technology with Gemini’s unique clearing and custody capabilities creates a full-service industry-leading crypto prime brokerage service tailored to the needs of institutional investors.”

  • Furthermore, the Omniex purchase could propel Gemini to compete with Coinbase in the United States.
  • The latest acquisition marks Gemini’s second in less than one week. The company earlier purchased San Francisco-based digital asset platform BITRIA, expanding financial advisors’ ability to better manage clients’ portfolios from one interface.
  • Back in November, Gemini raised $400 million in a fresh funding round, bringing the exchange’s total valuation to $7 billion.


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$400M funding round to help Gemini build in the decentralized Metaverse

The Winklevoss twins’ crypto exchange Gemini will allocate capital from its $400 million funding round into building a “Gemini experience in different Metaverses.”

Gemini announced that it had closed a $400 million equity growth funding round at a valuation of $7.1 billion on Nov. 18, marking the first time the firm had sought outside financing. Morgan Creek Digital led the round with participation from 10T, ParaFi, Newflow Partners, and Marcy Venture Partners to name a few.

Notably, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) — which also partnered with Gemini to launch the first crypto trading services offered by a big four Australian bank — also backed the round.

“With this round of financing, Gemini will continue to bring simple, innovative, and secure products to market, and advance its geographic expansion,” the announcement read.

During an interview with Forbes published on Nov. 18, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss outlined their plans to expand Gemini’s reach into the Metaverse.

Tyler noted that instead of building numerous “branches in meatspace,” — a reference to the popular meme-based description of physical reality — the company is aiming to spread itself across multiple Metaverses:

“We’re gonna build a Gemini experience in different Metaverses, where you can go into Gemini and trade, but it would be immersive instead of on your phone.”

According to Forbes, the twins will retain 75% of ownership over Gemini, with Morgan Creek’s general partner Sachin Jaitly joining the board of directors as part of his firm’s $75 million investment into the crypto platform.

The move will once again bring the duo into competition with Mark Zuckerberg, who they famously battled in court over the ownership of Facebook more than a decade ago. The Twins sued Zuckerberg in 2004, alleging that he stole their intellectual property to create Facebook, and went on to settle in court in 2011 for $65 million.

Related: VR Metaverse comes closer to reality as Meta previews haptic gloves

Cameron emphasized to Forbes that unlike the centralized roadmap for the Metaverse from firms “like Facebook or Fortnite,” Gemini is aiming for the decentralized route due to the belief that it offers greater upside for the user:

“But there is another path, which is the decentralized Metaverse and that’s the Metaverse where we believe there’s greater choice, independence and opportunity, and there is technology that protects the rights and dignity of individuals.”

“Decentralization is a spectrum,” Cameron added, noting that “we want to continue to move down the spectrum toward empowerment.”

The twins snapped up plots of land in The Sandbox Metaverse at the start of April, with Tyler noting at the time that the plan was to set up Gemini’s crypto exchange and NFT marketplace Nifty Gateway in the play-to-earn focused virtual world.