The Norwegian Government Pension Fund, known as the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, indirectly owns nearly 578 bitcoin (BTC) – currently worth USD 6.2 million – through its investment in MicroStrategy, the publicly traded US-based software company that made headlines earlier this year after it invested a large chunk of its cash reserves in bitcoin.
The Norwegian state-owned fund’s position in MicroStrategy was first pointed out by Arcane Research, which said that the fund owned 1.51% of the shares in MicroStrategy as of December 31st, 2019. However, the ownership is still smaller than other institutional investors like BlackRock and Vanguard, which owned 15.24% and 11.72% of the shares, respectively.
MicroStrategy became known to the crypto community after its first investment in bitcoin back in August, when it purchased about USD 250 million of the cryptocurrency, citing BTC as a more “dependable store of value” than cash. The company then followed up again earlier in September, when it said it bought an additional 16,796 bitcoins at an aggregate price of USD 175 million.
And although the Norwegian Government Pension Fund, which invests surplus revenue from Norway’s lucrative oil and gas sector on behalf of the government, has inadvertently gotten the bitcoin exposure due to its largely index-based investment style, some believe that the institutional awareness of bitcoin that comes with it is a step in the right direction.
“$1 trillion Norwegian Pension fund now owns 577 BTC. What happens when they fall down the rabbit hole?,” Dan Tapiero, global macro investor and co-founder of DTAP Capital commented on Twitter today, while also adding that although the fund’s exposure is “irrelevant” for now, it “gets them to start to think about it.”
The fund’s holdings include about 1.4% of all publicly traded stocks in the world, which led Arcane Research to state that it is “not unlikely” that the fund also has exposure to bitcoin via other investments.
In all, the Norwegian Government Pension Fund has over USD 1 trillion in assets, making it the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, followed by China Investment Corporation and the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.
BTC is currently (10:05 UTC) trading at USD 10,741. It dropped 2% in a day and increased 3.4% in a week.