Fidelity recently filed for a set of new trademarks in its latest bid to expand into the Metaverse. The applications were filed on December 21st and cover non-fungible tokens, digital currency services, and mutual and retirement fund investments in virtual worlds.
Fidelity to Expand into Virtual Worlds
Fidelity recently filed for three new trademarks on digital assets and virtual worlds. While the details are scarce, the filings have a focus on NFTs and virtual worlds like the Metaverse. They can be found on the website of the United States Patent and Trademark Office and are under serial numbers 97727473, 97727439, and 97727409.
They are described as mainly related to NFTs “featuring textual and graphic content”. and offering various virtual world services. These include, according to the filings, marketing, and referral programs in the Metaverse and metaverse-like spaces. Perhaps the most interesting part of the trademark filings includes the mention of investment, hedge, and retirement fund services in virtual worlds, as well as providing investment information and securities brokerage.
The filing also mentions cryptocurrencies in a broader sense. More specifically, it lists the trading and managing of crypto, blockchain, digital, and digitized assets as well as the transfer and exchange of, and financial consultation with regard to these.
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Fidelity Remains Keen on Digital Assets Despite the “Crypto Winter”
Fidelity has had an interest in Bitcoin since at least 2014 and has continued looking and expanding into this and other cryptocurrencies throughout the bull and bear markets since. This year hasn’t been different for the company as it rolled out several new digital asset services throughout 2022.
Already in April, the company started offering Bitcoin as a part of its 401(k) retirement plans, and in September it announced plans to provide commission-free trading of the world’s largest cryptocurrency to retail investors. The investment giant rolled out the feature in 35 US states several months later by offering access to an early-access waitlist in early November.
Fidelity also launched a spot Bitcoin ETF in Canada that saw $1.9 million in trading volume just on its very first day. The firm has also been facing some pushback over its crypto adoption. Throughout 2022, Senators Durbin, Warren, and Smith wrote to Fidelity three times urging the company to discontinue its BTC 401(k) with the last letter cautioning against the inclusion of digital assets in retirement funds and citing the recent collapse of FTX.
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About the author
Tim Fries is the cofounder of The Tokenist. He has a B. Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Tim served as a Senior Associate on the investment team at RW Baird’s US Private Equity division, and is also the co-founder of Protective Technologies Capital, an investment firm specializing in sensing, protection and control solutions.