by George Krash
ARK Invest, a manager of thematic Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) recently became the first public fund manager to invest in Bitcoin. As it was revealed in their press release, the investment in bitcoin made for their ARK Web x.0 ETF (NYSE Arca: ARKW) will happen by purchasing Grayscale‘s publicly traded shares of Bitcoin Investment Trust (OTCQX: GBTC).
ARK Investment Management LLC, headquartered in New York, isn’t new to Bitcoin. As ARK’s founder and chief investment officer Cathie Wood said, “We’ve been watching it for a long time, not long after Satoshi Nakamoto, who ever he or she is, designed it.”
Wood noted that “Bitcoin is a disruptive innovation and while still in its infancy, interest has been growing rapidly in Silicon Valley, Wall Street and Washington, D.C.”
Shortly after announcing that Ark Invest is officially making the cryptocurrency part of their Web x.0 ETF, they released the third part of their investigation on Bitcoin titled “Bitcoin: A Store of Value”. The previous two parts of this research initiative, as well as their whitepaper on Bitcoin, can be found on their website. Additionally, Cathie Wood said that they’re going to publish a whitepaper on Bitcoin’s security concerns, particularly about the potential threat of a 51% attack.
Web x.0 is heavily focused toward future technology. As the company website state,, it is “an actively managed fund with a broad mandate to invest in companies its managers have identified as benefiting from an infrastructure shift away from hardware and software toward cloud and mobile.”
Wood hinted that while ARK Invest considers Bitcoin to be in its early development stages. it believes that the “Bitcoin platform could be as big as the Internet platform, which, in its early days, also faced tests associated with illicit activities.”
As for why their investment is happening now, Wood said, “We would prefer to invest after, rather than before, such tests. We have been impressed that the bitcoin price has stabilized in the $200-300 range. It could have imploded but has survived.”
Furthermore, Brett Winton, research director at ARK Invest, estimates that 540,000 bitcoin users hold balances with a value greater than $100. He suggested that this figure is growing with an annualized rate close to 60%.
Wood concluded by stating that ARK Invest and its staff are “believers in bitcoin, the currency, and Bitcoin, the technology platform. We also believe that current prices present an attractive entry point for our investors.”