Cathie Wood, CEO of Ark Invest, has doubled down on her prediction that the price of Bitcoin (BTC) will grow tenfold in the next five years and said the growth of decentralized finance (DeFi), nonfungible tokens (NFT) and the Ethereum 2.0 upgrade has massively increased Ark’s confidence in Ether’s (ETH) future.
Wood’s prediction has Bitcoin’s value to have hit almost $500,000 by 2026. She said that Ark Invest’s future exposure to crypto was likely to be around 60% Bitcoin and 40% Ether.
Wood made the comments Monday during a live stream at the SALT Conference in New York.
Her BTC price thesis is based on more companies adding Bitcoin to their balance sheets and institutional investors allocating around 5% of their portfolios toward Bitcoin or other cryptos.
But she said Ether is becoming more and more attractive as an investment thanks to the explosion in developer activity related to NFTs and DeFi.
“I’m fascinated with what’s going on in DeFi, which is collapsing the cost of the infrastructure for financial services in a way that I know that the traditional financial industry does not appreciate right now,” she said.
“Our confidence in Ethereum has gone up dramatically as we have seen the beginning of the transition from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.”
Ark Invest manages several actively exchange-traded funds with a focus on disruptive innovation. It has significant investments in Coinbase and shares in the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, and Wood has spoken frequently about her enthusiasm for Bitcoin.
Wood said that from past experience, she believed no regulator, including new United States Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler, would want to be blamed for preventing the next big tech breakthrough.
“I’m very happy he understands crypto and the merits of Bitcoin in particular — he is a regulator, though, and he is a hardcore regulator.”
Wood believes the SEC’s threats to pursue legal action against Coinbase regarding the launch of a stablecoin yield product highlights that the crypto ecosystem is developing faster than the regulators have been able to keep up with.
In her view, Coinbase shouldn’t be especially worried. Wood highlighted how in October 2019, Canada's largest Bitcoin and digital asset fund manager received a favorable ruling from the Ontario Securities Commission to offer a publicly traded Bitcoin fund.