Private equity billionaire Orlando Bravo said: "Crypto is just a great system. It's frictionless. It's decentralized."
Ethereum isn't unique in its smart-contract abilities and can expect growing rivalry from other crypto networks, JPMorgan's Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou said.
Bitcoin has had a stellar rally, rising for eight days straight after Elon Musk made positive comments and Amazon appeared interested in crypto.
The new operation will be run by Alkesh Shah, who previously led the firm's global technology specialist team.
Over half of young UK investors are using debt to fuel the boom and purchase crypto assets, according to a survey by Interactive Investor.
Amber Group's $100 million fundraising round is the latest sign of institutional interest in crypto startups.
North American hedge funds surveyed were the most bullish about crypto, saying they expected to ramp up their exposure to 11% on average.
"Any asset class that basically moves 10% based on one guy's tweets is not fit for purpose," the investment chief at SocGen's UK private bank said.