Fidelity’s plan to corner the cryptocurrency market appears to be more ambitious than previously thought as the asset manager looks to offer more institutional avenues to digital assets.
In a recent interview with the Boston Globe, Christine Sandler, director of sales and marketing for Fidelity Digital Assets, said that institutional interest in crypto is growing. For most investors, the primary entry into cryptocurrency was Bitcoin (BTC) and, to a lesser extent, Ether (ETH).
Tom Jessop, who heads Fidelity Digital Assets, said the pandemic is a major motivator for investors to finally get into crypto:
“What really got people off the fence was the pandemic, because you have this tight asset class – only 21 million Bitcoin are ever created – and an environment where our currency is devalued and a lot of money is being printed. ”
It’s no secret that most institutional investors are cautiously entering the crypto market for the first time this year. The institutional interest mostly remains to buy Ethereum or Bitcoin directly. Fidelity Investment seems to be one step ahead and aims to be among the first to provide the infrastructure investors need to directly access the crypto market.
In March of this year, Fidelity filed the S-1 document with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC officially filed for approval of its own Bitcoin ETF called the Wise Origin Bitcoin Trust. In late July, Fidelity acquired 7.4% of the shares in the North American crypto Miner Marathon Digital Holdings worth $ 20 million.
Fidelity has also set up its own specialized venture capital division called Devonshire Investors, which invests in cryptocurrency startups like ErisX, Talos and Coin Metrics.
The company’s crypto ambitions have been fueled by growing customer demand for access to crypto investment opportunities. A similar trend can be seen in large institutional funds and banks in the US and around the world. As Cointelegraph recently reported, US bank JPMorgan is now offering its customers access to six crypto funds. After their initial criticism of digital assets, companies like BlackRock, Goldman Sachs and Citibank have also expressed a more positive outlook on Bitcoin. Meanwhile, a recent survey by London-based crypto fund Nickel Digital Asset Management found that the majority of asset managers expect to increase their exposure to crypto in the coming years.