Three Quarters of Asia’s Wealthy Investors Will Own Digital Assets by 2022: Report – TechCrunch

According to a new report from consulting firm Accenture, 73 percent of “wealthy” investors in Asia intend to own some form of digital assets by the end of 2022.

It’s unclear how Accenture surveyed the populace in the sprawling region or defined “wealthy” investors. What is clear is that, like their US counterparts, the affluent in Asia are increasingly looking to digital assets — which can include cryptocurrencies, stablecoins, crypto mutual funds, security tokens, and asset-backed tokens — to build their own personal wealth.

According to Accenture, 52% of wealthy investors in Asia currently own digital assets. In the US, up to 83% of millennial millionaires own cryptocurrency, according to a survey released by CNBC in December.

Despite rising interest from Asian investors, most wealth management firms in the region are not yet offering digital assets to their clients — and two-thirds of firms currently have no plans to do so, according to Accenture.

On the other hand, a number of startups have sprung up to meet the growing need for crypto-native financial services from high net worth and institutional investors in Asia. One of the most well-funded crypto wealth managers in the region is Amber Group, founded in 2018 by a team of former Morgan Stanley traders. The startup reached a $3 billion valuation at its fundraising close in February and will reportedly raise a new round with a $10 billion valuation. Babel is another competitor in this space, whose valuation rose to $2 billion in May.

While companies like Amber offer an all-in-one crypto asset platform for investors, other startups are developing the infrastructure underlying crypto financial products.

For example, staking has become a popular way for investors to generate passive income. It works by keeping one’s cryptocurrencies locked on a particular network in order to earn rewards, much like an interest-bearing savings account. That’s because certain networks like Ethereum verify transactions using a “consensus mechanism” called “Proof of Stake,” which eliminates the need for centralized intermediaries.

The process of staking or injecting one’s tokens into a network to prove the legitimacy of a blockchain transaction might be too technical for the average investor, so services like Singapore-based RockX emerged to offer staking to wealthy individuals and institutions. to offer as a service. The startup raised a $6 million Amber-led Series A in April and plans to add its technology to Amber’s list of product offerings.

Within a year, RockX’s assets under management grew from $200 million to $1 billion, its founder and CEO Zhuling Chen told TechCrunch in May.

Chen expects investor demand from Asia to grow rapidly in the coming years. Many Western users have already engaged in staking, but the area is just beginning to get noticed in Asia, he observed. In the first few years after bitcoin’s birth, Asia accounted for a sizable portion of the world’s individual crypto investors, who primarily traded tokens on exchanges for short-term gains. Now that institutions and family offices in the region are increasingly looking to add crypto to their long-term portfolios, staking represents an investable opportunity for them, Chen said.

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