BlackRock launches blockchain industry ETF, naming crypto as 1 of 3 big opportunities

BlackRock has officially launched a blockchain-focused ETF, giving investors exposure to the crypto and blockchain industry without directly owning digital assets.

On Wednesday, the world’s largest wealth manager, which currently has around $10 trillion in assets under management, added the Blockchain and Tech ETF (IBLC) to its iShares product line.

The $4.7 million ETF does not own any cryptocurrencies or digital assets itself, instead tracking a number of international companies active in the industry.

The ETF is made up of 41 separate holdings, with the largest single holding being US-based crypto exchange Coinbase, which accounts for 11.45% of the fund. Closely followed by major bitcoin miners Marathon Digital Holdings (11.19%) and Riot Blockchain Inc., accounting for 10.41% of total holdings.

The ETF shows readiness for future acquisitions and currently has a healthy US dollar cash position of 9.15%.

Alongside the release of the new ETF, BlackRock released a report outlining three main areas of the market that are currently undergoing constant change.

The paper describes how bullish BlackRock is on the crypto industry, noting that while most attention to digital assets focuses on price and volatility, the true value of the blockchain is yet to be fully realized.

“We believe the broader opportunity – the use of blockchain technology for payments, contracts and consumption in general – is not yet priced in.”

The paper also draws attention to the launch of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), noting that 87 countries are currently exploring the technology.

Related: BlackRock joins stablecoin issuer Circle’s $400 million funding round

Crypto ETFs are becoming increasingly popular among institutional investors to gain exposure to the cryptocurrency industry.

Discussions about a spot Bitcoin ETF were reignited after a recent Nasdaq poll found that 72% of the 500 financial advisors surveyed would be more likely to put client money in a spot fund than a futures-based one.