David is a tech journalist who loves old-school adventure games, techno and the Beastie Boys. He's currently on the finance beat. David is a tech journalist who loves old-school adventure games, techno and the Beastie Boys. He's currently on the finance beat.
Seminal crypto-fund Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), an Exchange Traded Product that invests exclusively in Bitcoin, is up a pants-threatening $1.5 billion this year — 90% growth in just six months.
According to the docs shared by the Securities and Exchange Commission, GBTC held around $1.9 billion worth of Bitcoin at the end of 2019. As of June 30, 2020, its portfolio had ballooned to $3.5 billion.
But Bitcoin’s price has risen by 25% since then, inflating the value of GBTC’s crypto even further. Using today’s prices, GBTC sits on almost $4.5 billion worth of Bitcoin (as long as it didn’t offload some of its stash in the past six weeks, that is).
The growth enjoyed by GBTC is truly staggering. Since 2014, Bitcoin’s price has rollercoasted: from $330, up to $20,000 in 2017, down to $3,100 in 2019, and now sits at $11,000 once again in 2020.
In that time, GBTC has added more than 250,000 BTC to its stash, and went from holding $42.8 million in BTC to nearly $4.5 billion: an increase of 10,000% over six years.
GBTC offers itself to investors who might be interested in owning Bitcoin without actually, like, holding it. As Bitcoin is GBTC’s only asset, institutional investors might prefer buying GBTC stock instead of figuring out how to store it securely themselves.
This allows less tech-savvy investors to abstractly profit from potential Bitcoin price increases via GBTC; it’s a cryptocurrency investment vehicle.
[Read: A look inside the $1B internet fund that’s beating the market by more than 200%]
One major Wall Street player that’s into the idea is ARK, whose $1 billion Next Generation Internet fund currently holds more than $40 million worth of GBTC stock.
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