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Grayscale CEO Welcomes BlackRock and Giants to Bitcoin ETF Race, Affirms Asset Class Validity

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In a significant development for the cryptocurrency market, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein has expressed his approval of BlackRock and other leading asset managers joining the competition to launch a spot bitcoin trading fund (ETF). Grayscale is currently embroiled in a legal battle with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its blocked attempt to convert its flagship trust into an ETF.

Sonnenshein welcomed the entry of BlackRock, Fidelity and other industry heavyweights into the crypto space, considering it a moment of validation. In an interview on CNBC’s “Last Call” segment, he emphasized the impact of the world’s largest asset manager publicly committing to advancing his crypto endeavors. Sonnenshein stated that BlackRock’s move adds credibility to the asset class, highlighting its durability.

Following BlackRock’s filing for a crypto ETF in June, several other well-known asset management firms, including Fidelity, Invesco, and WisdomTree, have taken similar steps. Grayscale has played a pioneering role in crypto asset management thus far, with the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) currently holding $19.1 billion in assets under management. However, the trust’s recent performance has lagged, and is currently trading at a 27.5% discount to Net Asset Value, according to data from The Block Research.

Last year, Grayscale filed for the conversion of its signature trust into an ETF, only to face resistance from the SEC. In response, the company took legal action against the regulatory agency in June 2022 to force a review. Sonnenshein expressed optimism, stating that a successful outcome in the lawsuit could unlock billions of dollars of investor capital. He further noted that the transition to an ETF structure would give investors the added protection they want and deserve.

As the race to launch bitcoin ETFs intensifies, the involvement of established financial giants signals the growing recognition of cryptocurrencies as a legitimate investment class. Grayscale’s CEO welcomes this development as a step forward in building trust and credibility within the crypto industry. Investors are eagerly awaiting the settlement of Grayscale’s lawsuit, as it could have significant repercussions for the future of bitcoin ETFs and the wider cryptocurrency market.

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