INTERVIEW: CBOE DIRECTOR FOR PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
Success of Bitcoin Futures and prospects for other coins
When the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) announced last year that it would be launching Bitcoin futures, the announcement worked as a catalyst to the massive crypto rally of the end of the year, no doubt about that.
A few months have passed since then. Cointelegraph sat down with Dennis O'Callahan, CBOE’s director for product development, at the QUANT Conference in Venice.
Cointelegraph: “Hi Dennis, thanks for taking the time. Let’s start at the beginning, what was it that made you decide to pursue Bitcoin futures as a potential product for CBOE?”
Dennis O’Callahan: “/…/ We monitor all spaces, including the cryptocurrency space, and we have been looking at it since about 2014 or so, looking for ways that we could get involved in this market. /…/ “
CT: “You were not the only ones to come out with Bitcoin futures in December, but you were the first, how did it come about that you launched at a similar time as CME, and have you kept much of an eye on their product?”
DO: “We had been talking to our regulators, the CFTC, since about May or June of 2017. So we have been in the process for quite some time. In August we put out a press release that we were exploring this market, and at that time we still had not heard of any other exchanges involved in this market, so we were well on our way to having this product before we even heard that CME was looking at this space. We were the first to market because we had been working on it for quite some time. We are happy with the way our product is running /…/.”
CT: “What about that regulatory minefield that is often associated with cryptocurrencies /…/?”
DO: “The CFTC want the same things that we want, we want a fair and orderly market, and we want a market that is not open to manipulation or anything untoward. They asked us questions, very good and insightful questions, they challenged us on points and we answered their questions. /…/”
CT: “/…/ are you happy with the product, would you consider it a success?”
DO: “Our goal is to make sure we are doing everything we can to make the product as accessible to users as possible. We believe we are heading in that direction, so we are pleased with the results so far.”
CT: “As the director of product development, what else have you got your eye on when it comes to the cryptocurrency market, and different products that are out there. Is there any inside scoop you can give us on what CBOE has its eye on?”
DO: “Being in product development our task is to look for new products all the time, so we are constantly evaluating that market, and we are evaluating other cryptocurrencies too, among other items. But we have seen how Bitcoin has worked, so we are definitely monitoring other markets to make sure that the infrastructure and everything is in place in case we want to pursue other cryptocurrencies.”