Gemini (company)

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Gemini
Gemini (digital currency exchange) logo.svg
Type of site
Private
Headquarters,
U.S.
Key peopleCameron Winklevoss (Co-founder), Tyler Winklevoss (Co-founder)
IndustryCryptocurrency
ProductsBitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Zcash, Gemini dollar Exchange
Employees100+ (May 2018)[1]
URLwww.gemini.com
Current statusActive

Gemini Trust Company, LLC (Gemini) is a digital currency exchange and custodian that allows customers to buy, sell, and store digital assets. It is a New York trust company that is regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) and was founded in 2014 by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss.[2][3][4]

In June 2016, according to CNBC report, Gemini became the world's first licensed ether exchange. In May 2018, it was announced that Gemini had become the world’s first licensed Zcash exchange.[5] Currently, it operates in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Singapore.[6] Primary competitors include Coinbase, Binance, Bitstamp, and Kraken. All users are able to trade cryptocurrency and fiat currency on an open market. Users are able to transfer USD to and from their bank accounts.[7]

Gemini began in order to facilitate the purchase and storage of Bitcoin through a complex system of private keys and password protected environments. Only a small percentage of the total bitcoin on the exchange is held online to minimize the risk of loss from hacking.[8]

Gemini was the first exchange to launch bitcoin futures contracts in December 2017. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) uses Gemini "as the basis for the daily settlement for the bitcoin futures".[9]

History[edit]

Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss announced Gemini in June 2013[10] and the company went live on October 25, 2015. Gemini began adding to the financial services it offers thereafter, some of which include FIX and API support. On May 5, 2016 Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York State announced the approval of Gemini as the first licensed Ethereum exchange based in the United States.[11] Additionally, in 2016, Gemini announced it would allow users to withdraw Ethereum Classic (ETC) from the exchange, following a hard fork in Ethereum's code.[12]

In October 2017, Gemini announced that it was allowing registered users to withdraw Bitcoin Cash from the exchange provided they had a balance available on the exchange prior to the Bitcoin hard fork in August 2017.[13]

Fortune reported that Cboe uses Gemini to settle its Bitcoin futures contracts, "XBT", in December 2017.[14] Cboe partnered with Gemini so as to use Gemini's dollar denominated auction price for these contracts.

According to Bloomberg News, Gemini began offering "Block Trading" in April 2018. Block Trading enables Gemini users to buy and sell large quantities of digital assets outside of Gemini's continuous order books, creating an additional liquidity mechanism when trading in greater size.[15]

In March 2018, Gemini added a number of partnerships and products to its portfolio and network. It announced a partnership with Caspian, the full-stack cryptocurrency trading and risk management platform for institutional and complex investors.[16]

In April 2018, it was reported by Reuters that Gemini would be utilizing NASDAQ's SMARTS technology to monitor trades and combat fraudulent activity and price manipulation on its exchange.[17]

On May 14, 2018, the New York Department of Financial Services announced it had approved Gemini to offer Zcash (ZEC) on their platform. The NYDFS commented that its decision was a "continuation of New York's longstanding commitment to innovation and leadership in the marketplace." Gemini's CEO, Tyler Winklevoss, was quoted in the same press-release saying that Gemini "is proud to be the first licensed exchange in the world to offer Zcash trading and custody services."[18]

On September 10, 2018, Bloomberg News reported that Gemini had received regulatory approval for a new product, the Gemini dollar (GUSD) from the NYDFS and would launch trading of the coin that same day. Gemini described the product as a stablecoin which maintains a 1-to-1 peg with the American dollar.[19][20]

On October 3, 2018 it was announced that Gemini had obtained digital asset insurance covering tokens and coins held on its exchange. Bloomberg Markets reported that the insurance had been brokered by Aon, a London based public risk consulting company, and underwritten by a consortium of global underwriters.[21]

In May 2020, a partnership was announced with Samsung whereby Samsung smartphone users could link their Samsung Blockchain Wallets to their Gemini accounts to view balances and transfer crypto.[22]

NFTs[edit]

In November 2019, the Gemini Trust Co. bought Nifty Gateway for an undisclosed sum. Nifty Gateway is a marketplace for NFTs.[23][24] The goal of the NFT marketplace is to be a custodian for various assets, including property deeds, passports, commodities, collectibles, videogame characters, movies, music and event tickets.[25]

Service disruptions[edit]

The site's primary challenge has been remaining online at times of excessively high volumes, a relatively common occurrence for any website receiving an unusual amount of traffic.[26][27] On November 28, 2017, for example, both Gemini and Coinbase crashed for several hours. Gemini was showing a "504 gateway time-out" message, and the status page showed "Systems are currently experiencing degraded performance."[28] Subsequently, the Gemini Blog offered this comment. "This is not the first scaling challenge we’ve encountered, and it won’t be the last. We’re continuing to improve our performance and infrastructure monitoring so we can anticipate potential problems more quickly in the future."[29]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gemini". Linkedin. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  2. ^ Metz, Cade. "With Winklevoss Bitcoin Exchange, Digital Currency Grows Up". Wired. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  3. ^ Daniel Roberts (5 October 2015). "Winklevoss Brothers Get License for Gemini Bitcoin Exchange – Fortune". Fortune. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  4. ^ Paul Vigna. "Winklevoss Twins' Gemini Exchange Gets Trust License – BitBeat". WSJ blog. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  5. ^ Kharif, Olga (2018-05-14). "'Privacy Coin' ZCash Lands on Winklevoss's Gemini Exchange". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 2018-05-25.
  6. ^ Hungerford, Arjun Kharpal, Nancy (2016-06-21). "The Winklevoss twins are launching their bitcoin exchange outside of the US". CNBC. Retrieved 2017-10-19.
  7. ^ Mohan Garikiparithi (22 December 2017). "Top 5 Best Exchanges to Buy ETH (2017-2018)". Profit Confidential. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  8. ^ Nicholas Deleon (22 Dec 2017). "How Safe Is Bitcoin, Really?". Consumer Reports. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
  9. ^ Bloomberg (12 Dec 2017). "Winklevoss Twins Say Futures Are Just the Beginning for Bitcoin". Fortune. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  10. ^ Nathaniel Popper; Peter Lattman (2017-07-01). "Winklevoss Twins Plan First Fund for Bitcoins". Article. New York Times. Retrieved 1 Jul 2013.
  11. ^ "Governor Cuomo Announces Approval of First U.S.-Based Ethereum Exchange, Created and Operated In New York". Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. 2016-05-05. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  12. ^ Winklevoss, Cameron (2016-08-12). "UPDATE #2: Ether Classic Withdrawals". Gemini. Retrieved 2018-06-06.
  13. ^ "Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Withdrawals". Article. Gemini Exchange. 2017-10-07.
  14. ^ Rob Urban; Camila Russo (2017-12-09). "Bitcoin Futures Trading Brings Crypto Into Mainstream". Article. Bloomberg. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  15. ^ Olga Kharif; Matthew Leising (2018-04-09). "Winklevosses' Gemini to Offer Cryptocurrency Block Trading". Article. Bloomberg. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  16. ^ Joe Easton (2018-03-21). "Eddie Murphy-Inspired Fintech Firm Signs With Winklevoss Crypto Exchange". Article. Bloomberg. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  17. ^ Matthew Leising; Nick Baker (2018-04-25). "Winklevoss Twins Hire Nasdaq to Watch for Crypto Cheaters". Article. Bloomberg. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  18. ^ "Press Release - May 14, 2018". New York State Department of Financial Services. Retrieved 2018-06-06.
  19. ^ Annie Massa; Matthew Leising. "Terms of Service Violation". bloomberg. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  20. ^ "September 10, 2018: DFS Continues to Foster Responsible Growth in New York's". New York State Department of Financial Services. Archived from the original on 2018-09-11. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  21. ^ Massa, Annie (3 Oct 2018). "Winklevoss's Gemini Obtains Insurance for Crypto-Assets". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  22. ^ Schroeder, Stan. "Samsung makes it easier to buy Bitcoin on its phones". Mashable. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  23. ^ "Winklevoss Brothers Buy a Startup Founded by Identical Twins". Bloomberg. 2019-11-19. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  24. ^ "Winklevoss twins slam Facebook as their crypto business booms". Fox Business. 2021-04-05. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  25. ^ "Revenge Of The Winklevii". Forbes. 2021-04-05. Retrieved 2021-04-07.
  26. ^ Irrera, Jemima Kelly & Anna (25 December 2017). "Bitcoin fever exposes crypto-market frailties". Business Insider. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  27. ^ Detrixhe, John (7 Dec 2017). "Bitcoin is going bananas and exchanges are struggling to keep up". Quartz. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  28. ^ Becky Peterson (19 Nov 2017). "Bitcoin's price is collapsing and people can't trade because 2 big exchanges have crashed". Business Insider. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.
  29. ^ Frank Chaparro (9 Dec 2017). "Gemini, the crypto exchange founded by the Winklevoss twins, extends maintenance after massive bitcoin sell-off". Business Insider. Retrieved 17 Oct 2018.

External links[edit]