Cryptocurrency-focused trading and lending platform Membrane Labs Inc. has successfully raised $20 million in a Series A funding round. The investment was led by Brevan Howard Digital and Point72 Ventures, with participation from a mix of traditional financial firms and crypto-focused investors. Notable contributors include Jane Street Capital, Flow Traders, Two Sigma Ventures, Electric Capital, Jump Crypto, QCP Capital, GSR Markets, Belvedere Trading, and Framework Ventures.
Membrane is dedicated to addressing the technological shortcomings in over-the-counter (OTC) trading within the cryptocurrency sector. The company aims to elevate crypto institutions to the operational standards seen in traditional financial markets. Carson Cook, CEO of Membrane, expressed his satisfaction with the funding round, highlighting the platform’s success in building infrastructure to facilitate frictionless crypto transactions for financial institutions over the past four years.
The funding will be utilised to expand Membrane’s highly customizable technology suite, designed for institutions involved in spot, derivatives, or lending activities. The platform offers an all-in-one transaction management system, covering aspects from booking to position maintenance, collateral management, notifications/reporting, and settlement.
One of Membrane’s primary goals is to enhance market liquidity by providing the technology needed for a robust bilateral trading landscape, similar to traditional financial markets. The company plans to achieve this by revitalising credit and lending markets through a technology-driven approach to risk management, managing customised bilateral OTC derivatives, and unifying existing custodial solutions.
Membrane’s offering includes access to a fully integrated custody-agnostic settlement network, allowing participants to streamline both crypto and fiat transfers across various custodial and wallet solutions in the industry.
The platform’s collateral management system is a key feature empowering lenders, borrowers, and derivatives desks to oversee cross-margined portfolios of loans and derivatives. Users can customise risk parameters, monitor collateral balances, automate alerts, and handle collateral movements. Importantly, Membrane allows lenders to extend credit using assets held in centralised exchange accounts as collateral, offering capital efficiency while ensuring lenders are fully secured.
For custodians, Membrane’s technology presents an opportunity to establish OTC derivatives offerings on top of existing custody networks. This could provide a competitive alternative to centralised derivatives exchanges, introducing flexibility and security to bilateral transactions.
Since its limited early access release in the spring of 2023, Membrane has garnered support from major players in the crypto industry, with some of the largest lenders using the platform to manage and service their underlying loan portfolios.
Carson Cook emphasised that the successful funding round is a clear validation of Membrane’s focus on bringing secure, cost-efficient, and compliant infrastructure solutions to the digital asset space. Cook expressed confidence that Membrane’s platform will provide critical operational efficiency, streamlined workflows, and comprehensive risk management to various actors in the digital asset ecosystem.