British Billionaire Alan Howard’s Crypto Firm Scores UK Watchdog Approval

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 1 min read
Crypto approval
Source: Midjourney

Goldman Sachs-backed crypto platform Elwood Technologies announced Wednesday that the firm secured regulatory approval as a service provider.

The Financial Conduct Authority’s approval covers Elwood’s execution system for security tokens and derivatives.

Elwood, founded by British Billionaire Alan Howard, raised $70m in May 2022. The Series A round, co-led by Goldman Sachs and early-stage venture fund Dawn Capital, raised its valuation to $500m.

Barclays, Citi, and Two Sigma are among other TradFi heavyweights backing Elwood. Galaxy Digital, Chimera Capital, and DCG also back the firm.

Elwood, which offers a full Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform, hooks up with crypto exchanges worldwide, letting institutional investors trade digital assets.

Crunchbase data shows that Howard personally made substantial investments in the crypto sector, supporting around 40 crypto companies like Polygon and Komainu.

Elwood Expects TradFi Players to Invest More in Crypto

The UK-based firm now expects TradFi players to invest more in digital assets, despite 2022’s setbacks. It is one of the first digital asset service providers authorized by the FCA, per Elwood’s CEO.

Mathew McDermott, Goldman Sachs’ head of digital assets, said the FCA’s approval indicates Elwood’s progress in building regulatory-compliant digital asset infrastructure.

“We are excited to be a key stakeholder of Elwood Technologies and encouraged by the strides taken in the UK to bring digital asset companies in line with the strong regulatory expectations of the traditional finance world,” he said in a statement.

It’s worth noting that the FCA has a multi-step process in place to authorize companies operating in the crypto space.

First, companies need to check if their activities fit within the Money Laundering Regulations and the FCA’s rules. When approved, the company will be listed in the FCA’s register and receive a unique identification number.