While grassroots cryptocurrency adoption went stale after last year’s implosions in the industry, trading platform eToro’s chief executive believes that the appeal of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) for institutions and ease of investing through various platforms for non-professionals could further drive Bitcoin (BTC) adoption.
EToro CEO Yoni Assia told Cointelegraph at the recent Abu Dhabi Finance Week that institutions typically have rigid systems and prefer not to build new infrastructure for each asset class. However, for him, products like Bitcoin ETFs align with their existing modes of operation, making it easier for them to enter the market without developing new frameworks. He explained:
“[Bitcoin] ETFs could be a significant driver of adoption [because] institutions work in a very rigid way. […] They’re looking for the same infrastructure, and ETF, in many cases, is that infrastructure to enable institutional demand to those who don’t want to self-custody.”
Assia added that the availability of a Bitcoin ETF would likely bolster Bitcoin’s legitimacy in the eyes of institutional investors and, in turn, could support the asset’s price, as it represents a familiar and institutionalized form of investment.
Bitcoin surpassed $35,000 in October, a price not seen since May 2021, partly due to excitement around spot ETF approvals. The leading crypto by market capitalization has since hovered between $37,000 and $38,000.
Meanwhile, according to Assia, the ease of investing in Bitcoin through user-friendly platforms and its integrations into diverse investment portfolios are crucial to onboarding more retail users into the market.
“On the retail level, it’s all about the user experience, simplicity, and the ability to embed crypto investments and crypto trading in a wider portfolio,” he said, adding:
“[This] is what we believe crypto should be — an investment that’s a part of a more holistic investment view of investing in the stock markets, […] yield products […] and commodities.”
A September report from blockchain research firm Chainalysis shows that despite a decrease in worldwide grassroots crypto adoption, lower-middle-income countries — such as India, Nigeria and Ukraine — saw the most recovery in grassroots crypto adoption over the last year.
According to the study, the numbers are “extremely promising” for crypto’s prospects, paired with the increasing institutional adoption driven by organizations in high-income countries.
“I think, generally, Bitcoin’s adoption is about people understanding the need for nonconfiscatable, censorship-resistant internet money,” Assia said. “And that only grows over time.”
The executive believes that more people will understand why they need to accumulate crypto the same way some investors deal in gold and other commodities:
“[Crypto] is still an emerging internet commodity, and we’ll continue to see increased interest over time in Bitcoin for the next 10 years. I have no doubt that in 10 years, it’s going to [have] higher prices and [be] a more significant force in the world.”