ShapeShift acquires cryptocurrency hardware wallet company KeepKey

KeepKey bought by ShapeShift

ShapeShift, the cryptocurrency asset exchange has announced that its acquired Seattle-based KeepKey, a secure hardware wallet for digital assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.

With a focus on ease and security, the vertical integration of KeepKey and ShapeShift enables users to safely store assets on a KeepKey device while trading these assets directly over the ShapeShift API from the device’s interface.

KeepKey integrated ShapeShift’s API over a year ago and supports Bitcoin together with a wide variety of popular digital assets including Ether, Litecoin, Dash and more. The firm will continue manufacturing and distribution of the device.

Erik Voorhees, CEO of ShapeShift, said:

“Security is of critical importance when it comes to holding and trading digital assets. One of our priorities has always been to make the exchange experience as safe and easy for users as possible, and our pairing with KeepKey enables us to provide an unmatched customer experience.”

“Amid heightened interest in the concept of digital currencies, a simple, user-friendly cold storage wallet with native exchange functionality is one key to wider adoption.”

“With ShapeShift, users don’t need to leave funds in an exchange. With KeepKey, users don’t need to leave funds on any computer whatsoever. We see a future in which keys are kept on hardware, and noncustodial exchange occurs directly from the hardware.”

In simple terms, cold storage refers to keeping digital assets completely offline, disconnected from the Internet. Since Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ether, etc. are digital assets, when they are stored in online devices (such as a laptop or phone) there is an increased risk of theft.

Therefore by using KeepKey in conjunction with ShapeShift’s noncustodial exchange, a user’s attack surface is greatly diminished.

Ken Hodler, Chief Technology Officer at KeepKey said:

“This partnership will not only guarantee the future success of the KeepKey brand and product line but joining the ShapeShift team will enable us to focus on continuing to work on developing better technology and security for crypto-holders.”

ShapeShift has confirmed that the KeepKey brand and product line will remain the same, following high demand by users, and the acquisition will also provide increased capital for inventory and security expertise.