Ana Botín, president of Banco Santander, has said that the bank she presides over is about to offer bitcoin to its clients through exchange-traded investment funds (ETFs). Botín made these statements in an interview conducted by Bloomberg last October. At the moment, the service is not yet operational.
Ana Botín, Santander, bitcoin and ETFs
After stating that Santander bank is a leader in crypto, Botín assured that his clients do want to buy cryptocurrencies and that if they have taken so long to adopt them, it has been due to compliance and regulatory issues. The president of Santander also referred to stablecoins, of which she said there are about $ 100 billion unregulated, outside the system.
What is a Bitcoin ETF and why has the price of this cryptocurrency risen?
«And then, what do we do with that? A lot of innovation is taking place and it is in an area that is very systemic.
When asked how he viewed cryptocurrencies, Botín replied that Santander issued the first bond end-to-end on blockchain, which is the technology behind cryptocurrencies. “We have a strong group. It is not a large group, but it is strong in that, “he said.
Participate in the CBDC value chain
Regarding the CBDC, central bank digital currencies, the president of Santander assured that the most important thing will be to know how the central banks will want to handle them.
«Will they fend for themselves? Will they create a framework and tell us how to do it? Will they do nothing? I think what they will do is work with us, with the banks. And that is what we want, to participate in that value chain ».
Bank of Spain opens cryptocurrency services to traditional banks
Banco Santander issued a 20 million dollar bond on the Ethereum network in September 2019 and in April of this year it was chosen, together with Goldman Sachs and Société Générale, to place tokenized EU bonds on the Ethereum blockchain.
Bitcoin ETFs are investment vehicles that mimic the price of the cryptocurrency created by Satoshi Nakamoto. When you buy an ETF you are not buying a bitcoin as such, you are buying the representation of its value. It is a crucial tool to facilitate access to cryptocurrencies for investors, since they can invest in crypto following the traditional method, but without having to open a crypto portfolio or expose themselves to risks.
Santander, one of the 3 banks chosen to place the EU blockchain bonds
Register in the Banco de España registry
Observatorio Blockchain asked Santander if it plans to register in the Registry enabled by the Bank of Spain for operators who wish to offer cryptocurrency services, but the entity preferred not to comment. Likewise, this newspaper has asked Santander if it has requested permission from the CNMV to issue the ETF or if they plan to launch it from another place, but they also chose not to comment on the matter.
Regarding the inscription in the Bank of Spain registry, a BBVA spokesperson assured Observatorio Blockchain that, for now, its services are provided from Switzerland, where they comply with the applicable regulation. “When extending the service to other geographies, we will comply with the steps required by regulation at all times,” they assured.
Photo from the video of Ana Botín’s interview on Bloomberg