Canadian investment fund manager 3iQ Corp has floated its Bitcoin Fund on the Gibraltar Stock Exchange, a move aimed at broadening its investor base outside its original listing scope in Canada.
The dedicated crypto fund, which began trading on the TSX in April, tracks the bitcoin (BTC) price using an index feed co-developed by a VanEck Europe subsidiary and market data provider CryptoCompare.
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3iQ already manages two private investment funds: 3iQ Bitcoin Trust and the 3iQ Global Cryptoasset Fund, which started as a private placement available only to accredited and institutional investors in Canada.
With the filing, the company hopes to attract retail investors to one of the world’s first regulated and exchange-traded bitcoin funds on a European regulated exchange. Further, if deemed effective, the listing would allow investors who previously purchased 3iQ shares in a private placement to sell their shares in the market.
The exchange-traded product would provide investors who either cannot or will not buy the underlying asset with direct exposure to bitcoin value. The non-redeemable investment fund also aims to achieve capital appreciation through a long-term holding strategy.
“Finally, sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, and the many reputable financial institutions that are restricted to buying licensed, regulated, major exchange-listed products, now have access to the world’s only regulated, exchange-traded in Canada, publicly listed bitcoin fund. Being listed on the Gibraltar Stock Exchange extends the reach of The Bitcoin Fund within the burgeoning European digital assets market, and continues the groundswell of momentum that has defined 3iQ’s exciting progress during the first half of 2020,” said Fred Pye, President and CEO of 3iQ.
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Following an appeal, 3iQ has previously secured the approval from Ontario Securities Commission to offer its Bitcoin fund to Canadian investors.
To lend support to the fund, 3iQ said it addressed the questions of pricing, custody, audit, and public interest issues in a regulated investment fund. The company acts as the investment and portfolio manager of the fund, while New York-based crypto exchange, Gemini Trust fulfills the functions of the custodian of the bitcoins held in the fund.
Additionally, 3iQ partnered with asset manager VanEck to develop a Bitcoin benchmark in partnership with VanEck’s MV Index Solutions, a regulated index provider in developing cryptocurrency indices and data series.
Attracting blockchain and crypto startups has been seen as one way of bolstering Gibraltar’s thriving financial services industry after the self-governing territory, along with the UK, will leave the EU later this year.
Moreover, the Gibraltar Stock Exchange (GSX) is working to offer a tokenized securities exchange solution. Most recently, it partnered with STO Global-X (STGX), a Singapore-based startup, to enable different marketplaces to tokenize securities and facilitate the virtual ownership and trading of physical assets using digital tokens.
“The GSX offers the benefits of listing on a regulated and recognized stock exchange, aiming to enhance marketability and tax efficiency for issuers and investors of GSX listed products. The GSX operates two markets, the GSX Main Market and the GSX Global Market, which represent two core business lines within the wider GSX Group. The GSX Main Market operates as an EU regulated market as defined in the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) while the GSX Global Market operates as an MTF,” explains Nick Cowan, CEO of the Gibraltar Stock Exchange.