SBI Holdings to Launch First Cryptocurrency Fund in December

Divya  |  Sep 3, 2021

Japanese financial giant SBI Holdings is planning to launch the country’s first cryptocurrency fund by the end of November. The investment instrument would offer exposure to a range of crypto-assets including Ripple network’s native currency XRP.

Japan’s SBI Holdings Looks to Rollout First cryptocurrency Fund

According to SBI’s Tomoya Asakura, the fund could inflate to several hundred million dollars invested in various tokens, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and others. 

The financial conglomerate is specifically targeting Japan’s institutional investors with the fund. Asakura said that investors will have to add a minimum of 1 million yen ($9,100) to 3 million yen to the fund and it will mainly focus on those who understand the risks associated with digital assets.

Commenting on the purpose of the investment instrument, Asakura said that he wanted “people to hold it together with other assets and experience firsthand how useful it can be for diversifying portfolios.” He added that if the company’s first fund achieved success, then it would “quickly” move to the second one.

In a Thursday report, Bloomberg noted that demand for digital assets in Japan hasn’t been affected by the stringent restrictions against crypto businesses. Coinbase -- which recently started operations in Japan -- reported that crypto transactions in the country had reached 77 trillion yen in the first half of 2021. This figure is more than double the number recorded last year. 

Originally, SBI was looking into investment trusts to roll out its offering in the Japanese market. However, after investment trusts were barred by the Financial Services Agency, the company opted for an “anonymous partnership.”

Crypto Funds Can Be a Satellite Investment in Portfolios

During his conversation with Bloomberg, Asakura tried to clarify misconceptions around cryptocurrencies. 

“There is an overwhelming perception that cryptocurrencies are highly volatile and speculative,” he said.

In Asakura’s view, crypto-assets could be useful for building resilient portfolios since they “move inversely” to traditional financial offerings. He stressed that cryptocurrency funds can constitute the  “satellite” allocations of a portfolio, instead of core investments.

Asakura concluded by saying that once people experience SBI’s offering “first hand”, they will understand that cryptocurrencies are not being recommended as a “tool of speculation.”

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