Coinbase Global issued its first quarterly report as a public company on Thursday, showing a surge in business with growing public interest around investing in digital coins.
Despite raging speculation around cryptocurrency and a bountiful number of offerings, the asset class is a volatile one. After coming public more than a month ago, shares of the Coinbase crypto exchange are down 38% from their mid-April peak alongside the price of bitcoin.
In a wide-ranging interview after the close with Jim Cramer on “Mad Money,” Coinbase Chief Financial Officer Alesia Haas spoke about a number of major topics related to digital currency.
Below are takeaways from the Q&A:
What are cryptocurrency investors buying?
“Typically, the first coin that people are interested in is bitcoin,” she said. “The other crypto assets on the platform are seeing an increasing volume in trading assets on our platform, and so we think over time more and more users are getting engaged with more and more crypto assets and that’s what we’re excited to see.”
Is cryptocurrency regulation needed?
“We’ve leaned into regulations since we were founded,” said Haas, highlighting that the company believes regulations will bring trust to the market. “We like partnering with regulators. We want there to be a level playing field and we embrace regulation. We think it’s a benefit to our business and not a burden.”
What does Elon Musk’s reversal on bitcoin and the volatility in crypto say about the assets?
“I think crypto is here to stay. I do think crypto is volatile, though, and you can see it that we react to a tweet, that we’ll react to one-off headlines,” Haas said. “This is a long-term investment. We believe that we are just starting to get to the potential of crypto, but it could be a bumpy journey and we could see days that are up and down like we have seen in the past.”
Should investors take dogecoin seriously?
“We leave that to the decision of our users. We are a platform. We want to offer all assets that meet our listing standards and we hope to be the place where you can come and trade anything that you want to trade,” Haas said. “That is not the case today. We are slow. We need to add more assets. We’re making big investments to improve the speed of our asset addition, but clearly, the market is speaking.”
Mastercard, Visa, PayPal and other financial companies have made moves in crypto. Concerns about competition?
“We welcome them. Three years ago when we were the only crypto company, we were a little lonely out there, and so now that we see most fintechs embracing crypto and large financial services players, it just really says that crypto has arrived, like this is becoming mainstream this is here to stay, yet it is evolving,” Haas said.