Updated 14 Jul, 2021

$55bn Hedge Fund Marshall Wace to Step into Crypto Markets

Key Takeaways:

  • Marshall Wace looking to dive into crypto investments
  • The $55bn hedge fund is preparing a digital asset portfolio that will target crypto companies

Marshall Wace Gears Up for the Crypto Space

Hedge fund firm Marshall Wace is preparing to enter the world of cryptocurrencies. The step marks a revival in institutional interest after a period of a few months of absence. The London-based investment firm manages $55bn in assets. It will aim to invest in blockchain projects, payment systems for transferring digital assets, and stablecoins, those pegged to a fiat currency.

Marshall Wace will explore the digital assets field by creating a portfolio designed to seek and invest in privately-owned digital finance companies, preferably, at a late stage in their development. In addition, the investment group could target crypto-focused companies before flotation, or pre-IPO, and hold on to them after their stock market debut.

The new digital currency portfolio will follow a healthcare fund launched by the firm earlier this year and will aim to adopt a similar approach. The move to cryptocurrency investments is part of the company’s plans to target new private markets that could yield above-average, or alpha, returns.

The investment group’s plan to dive into crypto land is another big leap for mainstream finance toward the nascent digital asset ecosystem. Marshall Wace was founded in 1997 by Sir Paul Marshall and Ian Wace and is best known for betting on stocks across a wide selection of sectors.

The London-based Firm Joins Other Investment Giants to Explore Crypto

Marshall Wace’s step into the crypto space is welcomed by several large hedge fund firms that are already invested in the market or are planning to do so. Andreessen Horowitz is another high-profile institutional investor that has disclosed it’s plotting investments in the digital asset sector that would amount to $2.2bn. A major difference is that Andreessen Horowitz will target crypto-focused companies at their earliest stage of development.

Other hedge funds and institutional investors that have expressed interest in crypto include BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, Soros Fund Management, a pioneer in the hedge fund industry, and Duquesne Capital, now a family office ran by Bitcoin proponent Stanley Druckenmiller. Famous investors like Ray Dalio, Carl Icahn, and Paul Tudor Jones have also hopped on the crypto bandwagon.