Switzerland’s first fund manager licensed for cryptocurrencies mulling a move into Asia

Last week, Crypto Fund became the first Swiss crypto asset manager to win backing from Switzerland’s finance regulator. The landmark move illustrates how digital assets are breaking through to traditional finance.

Now, the firm is turning its attention to expanding into Asia: “Singapore is the next natural expansion step for us,” said CEO Jan BrzezekThe firm gauges interest for crypto investments as very high, and has also registered a willingness by Singaporean regulators to oversee the business.

Former UBS Banker

“This makes the market very similar to the Swiss one, which we know well”, Brzezek, a former UBS banker, said. Crypto Finance, the fund’s parent, plans to set up a booth at Singapore’s annual fintech festival in November.

Crypto Finance’s regulatory backing is a breakthrough in Switzerland’s nascent crypto scene, where providers are rushing to build bridges between traditional finance and blockchain technology underpinning the token providers flooding into the alpine nation.

Institutional Interest

Several scandals haven’t dented enthusiasm in official Switzerland – or “crypto nation“, as economics minister Johann Schneider-Ammann called it in January – for attracting cryptocurrency and blockchain firms. Switzerland, which has adopted a generally welcoming stance on digital assets, is due to issue a more thorough evaluation at year-end.

Even as respected economists like Nouriel Roubini slam cryptocurrencies as a scam, the tokens are seeing increased interest from Asian institutions – including wealth manager. However, infrastructure for regulation, custody, and criminal detection are needed for wider institutional acceptance.

Singapore a Mid-term Goal

Brzezek was coy on when the Swiss firm would make it to Asia. “The step into Singapore is a mid-term goal. First, we will hold talks with partners to evaluate how exactly to expand there”, he said.

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