Grayscale, a company that claims to be the world’s largest crypto asset manager, says it is “100% committed to converting GBTC” to an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF).
GBTC trades on OTC Markets and allows retail investors to easily invest in Bitcoin via a traditional brokerage account. On the advent of GBTC, Grayscale became the first company to launch a publicly traded Bitcoin fund in the U.S. and the first to convert a Bitcoin fund into an SEC-reporting company.
As more financial services firms file to offer a Bitcoin ETF (and Canada already offers on), pressure is growing on the Securities and Exchange Commission to approve an ETF based on crypto.
Grayscale states in a blog post:
“Grayscale first submitted an application for a Bitcoin ETF in 2016 and spent the better part of 2017 in conversations with the SEC. Ultimately, we withdrew our application because we believed the regulatory environment for digital assets had not advanced to the point where such a product could successfully be brought to market. While several firms have submitted Bitcoin ETF applications in the form of an S-1 or 19b-4 to the SEC, we are confident in our current positioning and engagement with the SEC. Today, we remain committed to converting GBTC into an ETF although the timing will be driven by the regulatory environment. When GBTC converts to an ETF, shareholders of publicly-traded GBTC shares will not need to take action and the management fee will be reduced accordingly.”
Whether Grayscale is the first BTC ETF or not expectations are for multiple ETFs to become publicly traded in the coming years. As institutional money enters the crypto spaee and more retail money is interested in the new asset class, it will become harder for regulators to deny the demand for these regulated investment vehicles.