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Morgan Stanley Bitcoin Fund Draws $29.4M in 2 Weeks, Filings Show

Morgan Stanley’s new bitcoin product is already one of the largest funds of its kind by investor count.

Apr 22, 2021 at 3:23 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:45 p.m. UTC

One of Morgan Stanley’s new bitcoin-only private funds raised $29.4 million from 322 investors in its first 14 days, according to regulatory documents published Thursday.

Managed by FS Investments with NYDIG custodying the bitcoin, the fund is one of two new bitcoin investment vehicles offered by newly bullish Morgan Stanley. When news of the institutional stalwart’s bitcoin offering broke last month, it kicked Wall Street’s crypto musings into high gear.

The early returns for FS NYDIG Select Bitcoin Fund LP indicate investors are indeed hungry for accessing bitcoin products through their institutional managers. Passive funds such as Morgan Stanley’s fare give clients unwilling to custody their own keys an easy way into the asset class.

In just 14 days, Morgan Stanley’s FS/NYDIG fund has become one of the most popular private bitcoin vehicles, beating out far older industry offerings from Pantera and Galaxy by investor count, according to fund data compiled by CoinDesk.

Galaxy is also accepting bitcoin investments from Morgan Stanley in a pre-existing fund. Galaxy’s three bitcoin funds (one generaltwo institutional) have been around since late 2019 but began accepting investments through Morgan Stanley in early April 2021. They reported around $250 million in lifetime sales earlier this month.

A source familiar with the trio told CoinDesk they receive investments from a mix of Morgan Stanley clients and outside investors.

Seeking exposure to bitcoin via a fund is not without its drawbacks. Morgan Stanley limits clients’ bitcoin bets to 2.5% of their total net worth. They must have at least $2 million in net worth and they must pay an upfront placement fee of 3% for bitcoin investments under $250,000, according to offering documents obtained by CoinDesk.

The average investment in Morgan Stanley’s new bitcoin fund was around $91,000. Morgan Stanley will receive placement fees, according to the regulatory documents. 

Morgan Stanley declined to comment. NYDIG and FS Investments did not immediately respond to CoinDesk.

UPDATE (April 22, 22:06 UTC): Adds information about Galaxy's fund composition.

DISCLOSURE

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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