The international investment company VanEck is known for its exchange-traded index funds (ETFs). VanEck was one of the first financial houses to try to make Bitcoin tradable using traditionally securitized financial products. Dominik Poiger, Portfolio Manager at VanEck, told us in an interview what institutional investors think about Bitcoin Circuit, why there is also a market for documented crypto financial products despite regulated token custody solutions and whether security tokens will become a new standard in this decade.
The interview first appeared in the October issue of Kryptokompass
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As a portfolio manager at a large investment company like VanEck, how do you get to grapple with cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin?
I felt like many others in the industry: The interest was mainly driven by the development of the Bitcoin rate. With regard to product development, however, the interest only really deepened at VanEck. BTC-ECHO also regularly reports on the efforts of its US colleagues to launch a Bitcoin ETF. The project manager was also in Germany for three months in 2017 – since then there has been a lively exchange. As a small company, we are also relatively flexible when it comes to product development. By the way, in our report “The Investment Case for Bitcoin” we show why BTC has earned its place in a traditional securities portfolio.
One often hears the statement: “ Institutional investors are pushing into the crypto market “ in order to generate positive sentiment for crypto currencies. To what extent do you share this statement or to what extent do you relativize it?
You can’t get past it anymore. Since the creation of Bitcoin, it has been shown that the cryptocurrency belongs in a classic securities portfolio. What is missing, however, are the so-called onramps for institutional investors. We as a company have therefore made it our business to build precisely this infrastructure in order to pave the way for institutional investors.
Can you reveal something about your customers, how they perceive the topic of cryptocurrencies?
Investors are particularly interested in the US launch of the ETF. As soon as the media talk about crypto ETFs, the name VanEck is usually mentioned. In this regard, we are definitely on the radar of investors.
Do you think that the trend of traditionally securitized financial products will continue?
Institutional investors have to keep their cryptocurrencies somewhere. However, if you don’t want to build your own custody infrastructure as an individual investor, there is no getting around a financial vehicle in the medium term.
But there are now BaFin-regulated custodians that enable direct investments in Bitcoin and Co. …
I agree. I think that’s a positive market development. We like to compare Bitcoin to gold. In the gold market, too, many investors tend to invest in a gold ETF or mining stocks. Investor preferences are simply different and so different products are needed that meet these preferences.