US Firefighter Fund Invests $25 Million in Crypto, Sparking a New Trend?

October 23, 2021, 10:15 AM AEST - 1 month ago

An American firefighters’ pension fund has invested US$25 million in bitcoin and ether, marking the first time a US public pension plan has invested in digital currencies, according to an October 21 announcement. This bold move is leading many to reconsider their stance on cryptos.

Houston Firefighters’ Relief and Retirement Fund (HFRRF) announced its crypto purchase through NYDIG, a digital assets manager and subsidiary of Stone Ridge Assets Management. The investment was made through a customised private fund that will be managed by NYDIG.

Taking the First Step into the World of Cryptos

In the context of the announcement, HFRRF’s chief investment officer Ajit Singh spoke of the importance of investing in cryptos:

This investment expresses our belief in the disruptive potential of distributed ledger technology for the development and democratisation of value accumulation through disintermediation.

Ajit Singh, CIO, HFRRF

Singh went on to say:

We have been studying digital assets’ transformative potential for some time, and we are pleased to have a partner of NYDIG’s calibre to ensure secure, robust and efficient execution, and enhanced compliance, as we enter this new market.

Ajit Singh, CIO, HFRRF

HFRRF’s benefactors include more than 6,600 active and retired firefighters and survivors of firefighters, and the fund holds over US$4 billion in total assets. Since 2004, HFRRF members have been contributing 9 percent of their salaries to the fund.

This purchase marks an important milestone for cryptos and their potential role in public pensions and superannuation funds. Nate Conrad, NYDIG’s global head of asset management, said the investment represented a watershed moment for bitcoin.

Entrepreneur and crypto investor Anthony Pompliano took to Twitter to share his opinion and make a bold prediction:

As crypto adoption becomes more widespread, many institutional investors are realising the importance of crypto exposure. Specifically, Australian superannuation funds are being urged to rethink their stance on cryptos or risk falling behind.

Accessing cryptos remains one of the biggest obstacles. To this end, Vault International Bitcoin Fund has established the first bitcoin-only fund in New Zealand. One of the main reasons for launching the fund is to remove the hassle and risk of direct crypto ownership.

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