Investment company Napoleon Asset Management has received approval by the French financial regulator to launch a regulated fund that provides exposure to crypto assets for institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals.
Paris-based Napoleon AM has received approval by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) to launch a crypto fund, according to a report by French newspaper Les Echos. The fund – called Napoleon Bitcoin Fund – is available to institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals who are willing to part with a minimum of €100,000 ($111,000). It commenced trading on December 6.
Ici c’est Crypto!
The investment fund focuses on quantitative trading strategies involving CME Bitcoin Futures to provide investors with Bitcoin (BTC) exposure. The asset manager will, therefore, not have to concern itself with crypto custody as these investment products are cash-settled.
The Napoleon Bitcoin Fund takes the form of an FPS, which stands for “Fonds Professionel Spécialisé” (specialized professional fund). This type of investment vehicle enables professional investors to invest in funds that have broader flexibility when it comes to eligible assets but are still regulated under French law.
Napoleon AM was launched after a successful token sale in early 2018, where the crypto asset manager managed to raise over $10 million through the sale of NPX tokens. The company has been acting as a licensed alternative investment fund manager since May 2019.
In a blog post, Napoleon AM’s parent company, Napoleon Group, stated, “The Group has always believed in the need to regulate the crypto and blockchain industry in order to accelerate its adoption and has participated in numerous meetings and workshops with both public and private players over the last quarters.”
This approach has been rewarded by the French financial regulator as Napoleon AM is among the first asset managers to offer a Bitcoin fund to institutional investors in France.
Whether the French investment community will jump on the opportunity to invest in Bitcoin in the form of a regulated investment vehicle remains to be seen. What is clear, however, is that regulators around the world are becoming increasingly open towards crypto asset based investment products.
Today, there are regulated crypto investment vehicles trading on stock exchanges and over-the-counter in France, Germany, Gibraltar, Sweden, Switzerland, and the US. We can expect this list to lengthen in the coming months and years as crypto continues its move into the capital markets.