Julius Baer Group – the Swiss private bank with over $110 billion in AUM as of 2021 – revealed that it will offer digital asset services to high-ended clients. A pilot program has been currently installed to test token booking, trading, and compliance. The group will integrate cryptocurrencies into its wealth management services by first offering relevant advice and research to its targeted clients.
Digital Assets as Centric to its Prospective Strategy
In a presentation explaining its future strategy to investors, the bank’s CEO Philipp Rickenbacher compared the current turmoil of the crypto market to the dot-com bubble burst in the early 2000s. Considering the commercial use of the Internet soon taking off in the wake of the burst, the CEO outlined a similar path ahead of the innovation in cryptocurrency:
“It paved the way for the emergence of a new sector that indeed transformed our lives; I believe digital assets and decentralized finance hold that same potential,”
In the strategy plan focusing on the cycle from 2023 to 2025, Rickenbacher highlighted that the firm will keep a close eye on the rise of digital assets and explore what opportunities the sector could present. As the company aimed to position itself as the intersection of “digital assets and the fiat world,” the CEO confirmed that it would dive into the DeFi space as well:
“Integrating digital assets into its holistic wealth management proposition will position Julius Baer firmly at the interface of digital assets and the fiat world. The Group is well-prepared to successfully navigate both its clients and its business through the disruptions decentralised finance will inevitably pose.”
Rickenbacher expressed a bullish outlook of DeFi, as he stated that the sector could potentially disrupt the “traditional cost-heavy and complex parts of the old banking system.”
SEBA Crypto AG
Back in 2019, Julius Baer already tapped Switzerland-based SEBA Crypto AG to provide its clients with access to services in digital assets. As indicated in the announcement, Baer stated that it believed bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies would become a legitimate asset class for investors’ portfolios.
Through this partnership, Baer noted at the time that it would extend its service range in providing storage, transaction, and investment solutions for digital assets.