Technology

Increasingly crypto-friendly Societe Generale launches the first French cryptocurrency depository fund

Arquant Capital is the first management company in France to offer professional investors the opportunity to actively manage funds in bitcoin and ethereum. The Société Générale subsidiary is the custodian of these funds, a first for the bank.

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We already knew about the interest of the French bank in innovative topics, in particular through its subsidiary SG Forge, but knew very little about the niche market for investing in cryptocurrencies.

Societe Generale, through its subsidiary Societe Generale Securities Services (SGSS), has expanded its offering of securities services to funds investing in cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin and ether. Its offer is initially focused exclusively on management companies (or “asset managers”).

Cryptocurrencies will make their debut among professional investors in the Parisian market. Arquant Capital, a management company for professional investors (institutional, private banks, family offices and companies), announced on Wednesday the launch of the first actively managed funds under French law investing directly in cryptocurrencies.

The first two funds are based on Bitcoin and Ethereum, the two major cryptocurrencies by value. The management company, established in 2019, was approved by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) in May last year to become an alternative investment fund (AIFM) portfolio manager. This is the only visa of this type issued by the AMF to a management company specializing in digital assets.

“More and more investors are looking to integrate cryptocurrencies into their portfolios. Therefore, management companies are striving to develop new lines of solutions, investing mainly in digital assets,” the bank’s press release emphasizes.

Thus, the latter intends to entrust managers with “the roles of custodian of the fund, appraiser and manager of liabilities. The services provided by SGSS allow asset managers to enrich their offerings within the European regulatory framework in a simple and appropriate way,” the media emphasize.

“The aim of these two funds is to offer professional investors the opportunity to diversify their asset allocation by directly risking Bitcoin and Ethereum through investment vehicles tailored to their compliance requirements and whose taxation is identical to that of FCP (Fonds Commun). de Placement),” the press release says.

Société Générale is actively involved in the development of blockchain solutions.

The French bank Société Générale has been interested in the application of blockchain in decentralized finance for several years, although it initially preferred to distance itself from Bitcoin.

In 2017, Severin Cabanne, Deputy CEO of Societe Generale, noted that his company is very inclined to “invest in blockchain technology” rather than Bitcoin.

In 2019, Societe Generale SFH issued a Housing Finance Bond (OFH) on Ethereum in the form of security tokens. In 2021, Societe Generale Forge chose the Tezos (XTZ) blockchain to launch its first tokenized structured product.

Last year, SG Forge co-founder Sylvain Prigent also posted a proposal on the MakerDAO governance module on behalf of his company to add a new type of collateral that can be used to receive DAI loans.

“By combining the innovation know-how of Societe Generale with the technical skills of Arquant Capital, we enhance SGSS’s ability to meet the diversification needs of fund managers. »

France may not feature in the rankings of some major crypto events, but its crypto ecosystem is slowly growing.

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