Retail investors can finally get their hands on the erstwhile private Ethereum Classic Investment Trust. The fund provides access to ETC’s market price minus fees and expenses. Its listing was approved by the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) from May 10 on OTC Market’s OTCQX Best Market under the ticker symbol ETCG.
The fund has been designed by Grayscale Investments which already offers similar funds on bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, litecoin, ripple, and zcash, apart from an index fund – the Digital Large Cap Fund. It is important to note, though, that for now, these funds are private and can only be bought by accredited investors.
The Ethereum Classic Investment Trust was launched in 2017 in private mode and provides exposure to price changes in Ethereum Classic by alleviating investors’ troubles regarding buying, storing, and safekeeping of the digital currency.
The press release of the listing had noted that as of April 30, 2018, each share of the fund represents 0.96988630 ETC. It explained that the amount of ETC reflected by each share will slowly fall over time as “The Trust will not generate any income and regularly sells/distributes ETC to pay for its ongoing expenses.”
The annual fee charged by the fund, inclusive of the 1% development contribution is 3%. Meanwhile, its Assets Under Management (AUM) stands at $57.1 million as of March 31, 2018.
Grayscale Investments explains the fund as “Ethereum Classic Investment Trust is a traditional investment vehicle with shares titled in the investors name, providing a familiar structure for financial and tax advisors and easy transferability to beneficiaries under estate laws.” Interested retail investors can buy shares of the fund via both, their brokerage as well as retirement accounts like IRA and Roth IRA, among others.
As far as security is concerned, fund literature explains that the private keys for the fund are protected by multi-factor security procedures and are maintained with Ledger SAS. While Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP are the legal counsel of Grayscale Investments, the financial statements of the fund are audited annually by Friedman LLP.
The listing of the ETCG marks the second fund offered by Grayscale to be available for sale to retail investors. The Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) is the first such product and has been quoted on the over-the-counter exchange since 2015.