Many were tuning in to watch Bloomberg TV for the first time in their lives after Blockchain.info CEO yesterday tweeted
— Nic Cary (@niccary) March 3, 2014
Followed by this message from Bloomberg TV host Erik Schatzker today
— Erik Schatzker (@ErikSchatzker) March 4, 2014
On the show Nic Cary announced that Blockchain has acquired RTBTC and its trading platform, in an ‘all bitcoin’ purchase. While many may not know RTBTC, the platform is a product from the makers of the popular ClarkMoody bitcoin charts. Until the arrival of rivals such as BitcoinWisdom, ClarkMoody’s bitcoin chart was ‘the destination’ for viewing pricing, and also appeared as the chart of choice in Reuters video interview with MtGox CEO Mark Karpeles in their Tokyo office last year (on a side note, many thought it was strange that Karpeles was using 3rd party charts and wasn’t relying on company technology).
With the purchase, Blockchain is renaming the trading platform ZeroBlock, the name of the mobile bitcoin app the firm purchased last year. Going beyond charts, ZeroBlock is a front end bitcoin trading platform where users can connect to exchange APIs of their choice to view current price data, market depth, as well as place trades. ZeroBlock is also being marketed to exchanges as a front-end interface that can be offered to its clients. ZeroBlock is similar to BTX Trader which also provides users the ability to trade at multiple exchanges using its interface. However, unlike that product was was launched last year and is available for free, ZeroBlock is offered on a monthly $20 subscription. However, we would imagine that Blockchain may partner with exchanges to make the platform available for free in exchange for opening accounts and trading with them.
With the recent upheaval at MtGox, Blockchain has been rumored to be a possible acquirer of the troubled exchange. While not the news some had expected, today’s deal does prove there were valid reasons to believe Blockchain was in the M&A game.