Kookmin Bank is planning to launch the first crypto fund in the country. The bank announced on Feb. 21 that it had formed a Digital Asset Management Preparatory Committee to determine product and strategy capabilities regarding digital assets and artificial intelligence investment funds. The bank expects to launch crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and futures products. The committee will also assess risk and compliance issues for the investment funds.
Kookmin Bank plans to launch a virtual asset-themed equity fund.
KB’s Head of Index Quant Management, Honggun Kim, confirmed the plans in the official release from the bank. He said, “We will launch a virtual asset-themed equity fund, etc. We plan to publish periodicals as well.” KB Financial Group, the country’s largest by net profit, had about $520 billion in total assets as of September 2021, according to the research platform MacroTrends.
The current plans are to launch a crypto investment index fund and a fund that utilizes an Outsourced Chief Investment Officer (OCIO), also referred to as outsourced investment management, to provide guarantees on principal investments. The OCIO fund may also be used in retirement pensions.
South Korean customers are embracing crypto and nonfungible token investments.
Such OCIO that may be considered includes Grayscale and Fidelity Asset Management, each offering crypto investment funds. Fidelity Canada launched a spot Bitcoin ETF last December though such a product has yet to be approved in the U.S. In launching a new investment fund for its customers, KB is responding to a market that has become increasingly receptive to crypto and nonfungible token (NFT) investments. Close competitor, Shinhan Bank, has dedicated an entire section of its mobile banking app to help customers manage their NFT collections on Klaytn, the country’s leading blockchain.