Robinhood Will Quickly Let You Transfer Your Dogecoin, Says Crypto COO

In short

  • Christine Brown is Robinhood Crypto’s new COO.
  • Brown tells Decrypt she plans so as to add crypto transfers to exterior wallets.
  • She can also be contemplating companies resembling staking and lending.

It’s been precisely a month since Christine Brown grew to become COO of Robinhood Crypto and already, all the pieces is on hearth. 

After Elon Musk gave up on Bitcoin and the Chinese language authorities renewed its crypto crackdown, a trillion {dollars} was scorched from the market, Ethereum misplaced half its worth, and Dogecoin’s journey to the moon stalled out.

The crash final week was sufficient to choke Binance, Coinbase, Kraken, and Gemini, every of which went offline amid the hearth sale. Solely Robinhood Crypto, the app recognized for its outages throughout Dogecoin buying and selling surges, managed to remain on-line all through. 

“It isn’t like there is a swap that flipped, like: ‘improve capability,’” Brown tells Decrypt. “It’s very, very sophisticated when it comes to ensuring that optimization is occurring.” Brown says the engineering group elevated fivefold since January and mans the desk in any respect hours. “To date, Robinhood has seen the dividends of the funding that we have been making.”

Earlier than changing into COO of Robinhood Crypto, Brown, 32, spent 4 years constructing the inventory clearing system that has made Robinhood the most popular commission-free buying and selling app in America. In 2020, the corporate introduced in $682 million in income from 13 million customers. 

The app’s reputation has continuously strained its tech. Final March, the platform constructed buckled throughout the S&P 500’s greatest day ever, then once more in January when legions of Reddit merchants pumped Gamestop shares so onerous that Robinhood reduce merchants off from the inventory.

Now Brown is main one in all Robinhood’s most demanded merchandise. 9.5 million individuals traded crypto on Robinhood within the first quarter of this yr, up from 1.7 million within the final quarter of 2020.

However Robinhood’s crypto providing remains to be much more restricted than crypto buying and selling companies on different apps. Robinhood prospects can solely purchase and promote a type of I-O-U observe that represents crypto Robinhood has purchased on their behalf. Not like Coinbase or Binance, Robinhood doesn’t enable its prospects to switch crypto to wallets exterior of its platform.

It’s adequate for now; Robinhood Crypto onboarded six million new customers within the first two months of 2021 alone. However soon, Robinhood customers might study that there’s much more they’ll do with their crypto. Brown’s subsequent job as COO is to forestall prospects’ wandering eyes. To maintain them loyal, she plans so as to add crypto transfers off Robinhood to exterior wallets. 

She has not set a deadline for that characteristic, and it’s a troublesome device to implement, she says. Merchants should be coddled into studying that crypto transactions are irreversible, how the broader DeFi market they’ll now entry carries numerous dangers, and the way fuel charges can eat up all their cash. 

“We need to ensure that we construct an expertise—not simply the technical basis of sending and receiving cash, however the person expertise round it—that’s intuitive, that is smart, and that reduces danger for our customers,” she says. 

Brown says the most up-to-date crypto crash gained’t delay the rollout of any new options. As soon as crypto transfers are carried out, Brown hopes to show Robinhood Crypto right into a type of monetary tremendous app—like Coinbase, however with inventory buying and selling. Staking and lending are all being thought-about. 

Competitors in that space is fierce: PayPal is planning the identical factor, and CEO Dan Schulman is even calling it a “tremendous app.”

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