Grayscale’s latest spot Bitcoin ETF amendment omits authorized participants


Cryptocurrency asset manager Grayscale has filed an amended Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) application without listing authorized participant details.

Bloomberg’s senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas flagged the amended filing on X (formerly Twitter), noting that the company had clarified that authorized participants in its proposed ETF could only pay and receive cash for shares.

Balchunas also highlights that Grayscale left the names of its authorized participants blank in the amended documentation filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC):

“Not sure why since SEC wants to see it and they have been pretty cocksure about having one. Also, nothing on fee (that I could see). That’s big open q too.”

Cointelegraph reported on Dec. 29 that seven companies vying to launch the first U.S. Bitcoin ETF products filed the latest versions of Form S-1 applications on Dec. 29.

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Fidelity, WisdomTree and Invesco Galaxy listed their authorized participants in the new filings. Invesco Galaxy selected Virtu and JPMorgan, while WisdomTree and Fidelity listed Jane Street Capital.

Authorized participants are financial institutions or companies that are able to create and redeem shares of an ETF.

Grayscale had indicated in June 2022 that it intended to list Jane Street and Virtu Financial as its authorized participants as it looked to convert its Grayscale Bitcoin Trust into an ETF.

Balchunas commented further, indicating that it was unclear why Grayscale had deliberately omitted its authorized participants while other firms had clarified these details.

“Yes, and they even tweeted that of course they have one, but alls I know (in philly accent) it isn’t in doc yet (which SEC wants) and until we see we aren’t counting any horse as official. Also, BlackRock, Fidelity et al did it, so why not be done w it?,” Balchunas wrote.

Grayscale submitted an amended S-3 filing with the SEC on Dec. 27 on the same day Barry Silbert — the CEO of its parent company Digital Currency Group — announced his resignation from Grayscale’s board of directors. 

The deadline for the SEC to deliver its verdict on the latest filings from prospective Bitcoin ETF issuers is set for Jan. 10. Industry experts have been suggesting that the SEC would deliver answers to the applying firms by the end of the first week of 2024.

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