Robinhood will launch a non-custodial Ethereum wallet with DeFi and NFT capabilities.
Robinhood is about to launch itself deeper into the web3 space.
Briefly after its announcement that Sam Bankman-Fried acquired 7.6%
of the company's stock, CEO Vlad Tenev announced a "Web3 crypto wallet" at the Permissionless conference in Palm Beach, Florida.
This new wallet is to be a full non-custodial web3 wallet similar to the likes of Metamask. As such, users will be able to lend, stake, yield farm, and trade fungible and non-fungible tokens. Furthermore, Robinhood announced it could do so "with no network fees," although it is not yet clear which blockchains the wallet will support.
Robinhood's Crypto CTO Johann Kerbrat told Decrypt
that the new wallet seeks to replicate the company's trademark no-fee model. However, considering Ethereum's high gas fees, it is unclear how Robinhood wants to accomplish that. Kerbrat told Decrypt that "partnering with liquidity partners to get the best price" will be part of the solution but didn't go into detail.
In another interview, Kerbrat told CoinDesk
that the team is "building this product as effectively a browser." The wallet is to become the "last missing piece to access the web3 space."
Robinhood is targeting the latter half of 2022 as a release date, with beta versions scheduled to come out over the summer. It is still unclear whether Ethereum's switch to proof-of-stake would somehow influence the release date and the promised no-fee approach.
Robinhood has had a complicated last twelve months, with its stock price being battered after the company's IPO in July 2021. The pivot to crypto could be a reaction to Sam Bankman-Fried's stake in the company, even though Robinhood has so far mostly focused on stocks. However, the trading app recently added SHIB
to its selection of tradeable crypto.
CTO John Kerbrat said:
"A lot of people are staying outside of Web3 because of the cost. Web3 is here to stay and we're building for the long-term. It's a bet on the future."
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