A $ 500 billion asset manager Union Investment plans to add Bitcoin (BTC) to several investment funds as part of a targeted pilot program for its institutional clients, offering compelling evidence that crypto is becoming more prevalent in Europe’s largest economy.
The Frankfurt institution told Bloomberg on Monday that it is considering adding BTC to a small number of investment funds that will only be available to private investors. For each fund, Bitcoin exposure will be limited to no more than 2% of total assets. Portfolio manager Daniel Bathe said the new investment strategy is likely to begin in the fourth quarter, although no fixed schedule has been given.
Union Investment is the investment arm of DZ Bank Group, an institution with more than 800 cooperative banks. As of June 30, 2021, Union Investment had $ 507 billion under management, making it one of the largest asset managers in Germany.
Germany is fast becoming a home for crypto investments, especially among institutional players. On August 2, a new law came into force allowing institutional funds to hold crypto, setting the stage for wider use of digital assets, even among German pension funds. Meanwhile German security broker S Broker recently announced a set of crypto-focused product offerings.
Related: What the SEC can learn from the German regulator
At the retail level, Germans don’t rank as high for crypto adoption, according to a recent survey by financial comparison website Finder. The 42,000-person survey estimated that only 11% of Germans had exposure to digital assets. Although this is higher than the United States and the United Kingdom, it has placed well below emerging markets and other European nations.
Bitcoin is turning its head again, as the first-born cryptocurrency pushes to $ 52,000. Price has recovered about 79% of its summer trough. In the process, Bitcoin’s total market capitalization is once again approaching $ 1 trillion.