Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. has purchased $100 million in bitcoins for its general investment fund, the latest mainstream firm to dabble in digital assets.
The mutual insurer also acquired a $5 million minority equity stake in Nydig, a subsidiary of Stone Ridge that provides cryptocurrency services to institutions, according to a statement. Nydig, which already keeps more than $2.3 billion in crypto assets for clients, will provide custody services for the insurer’s bitcoins.
Massachusetts Mutual, which has been around since 1851, is the latest company to invest in the largest cryptocurrency. MicroStrategy Inc. has expanded its investments into the coin, and Square Inc. has poured money into the world’s most popular cryptocurrency as well amid talk of growing institutional adoption and demand.
The investment will represent 0.04% of the general investment account of nearly $235 billion as of Sept. 30, Massachusetts Mutual said. “We see this initial investment as a first step, and like any investment, may explore future opportunities,” spokeswoman Chelsea Haraty said in an email.
Bitcoin has more than doubled in price this year and hit an all-time high this month, trading above $18,000 on Friday. Advocates say it is a kind of digital gold, likely to retain its value during times of turmoil and as a hedge against inflation despite its historical volatility.
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