Notable Spanish financial institution Banco Santander is reportedly planning to offer Bitcoin-related ETFs in the country, local media outlets reported on Thursday. If approved, Santander will launch the first Bitcoin ETF in the country.
“We are a leader in crypto. We issued the first bond on blockchain. We have a strong team working on it (…). Our clients want to buy bitcoin, but we have been quite slow to adopt it due to regulatory issues. Now we are about to offer cryptocurrency ETFs,” Botín said in a translated statement to Bloomberg.
Banco Santander has issued bonds worth about $200 million on the Ethereum blockchain in 2019. According to Chairman Botín, the bank has long been involved in the concept of cryptocurrency ETFs. However, it is yet to disclose details regarding the planned products.
Spanish financial institutions have generally shown reluctance to develop cryptocurrency investment products, but some have advanced their efforts towards cryptocurrencies.
For instance, Spanish banking giant Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria Bank (BBVA) launched a service in 2020 for private banking customers to buy, sell and deposit cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin in Switzerland.
The Bank of Spain recently requested domestic financial institutions to report on their plans for crypto services and businesses. It has called for a detailed explanation of plans for the next three years, including services related to token issuance, cryptocurrency custody, transactions, and payment functions.