Two Russian Banks to Start Offering Crypto-Based Fund

Banks to offer crypto fund

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Two banks from Russia are testing crypto-based investment options which they intend to offer to their customers. The two Russian banks which are Sberbank and Alfa-Bank have decided to start experimenting with different products based on digital financial assets in order to be in line with the Russian central bank’s regulatory sandbox.

The banks confirmed that the assets will take the form of six digital currencies which will include Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin. The digital currencies will form an investment portfolio. This move has come during a time when Russia is preparing to come up with binding laws to govern digital currencies and blockchain technology. The regulatory will see cryptocurrency become formally defined and also become a legal investment asset under the Russian law.

According to Anna Ivanchuk who is the deputy head of private banking at Sberbank:

“We are intending to offer our clients a very transparent entry point for crypto assets which will be fully compliant with all regulatory requirements which will indeed allow investments in Russia in products which interests them.”

The investment product will allow clients to withdraw fiat when they want by using cryptocurrency assets being under control of partner Group IB through custody solutions. According to Alexey Prokofiev who is another partner in the scheme said that: “Our clients will receive a share of the fund.”

Russia’s unpredictable stance when it comes to digital currencies has led to banks to remain hawkish on absorption and bringing together of technologies past blockchain experimentation up to this year. Sberbank had announced in January that it was planning to open a cryptocurrency exchange option for institutional investors through its Swiss branch.

Sberbank’s outspoken pro-crypto president Herman Gref continued with his negative talk about cryptocurrencies telling Kommersant that:

“I am no longer buying digital currencies anymore and I wouldn’t recommend anyone to buy and especially people who don’t play casino.”

The Russian banks are following the steps of well-known banks like Barclays which have decided to set up a trading desk. More banks are either investing in cryptocurrency or even working towards launching blockchain platforms.

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