Wednesday, November 22 – BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, has officially submitted the S-1 form for its iShares Ethereum Trust to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This submission initiates the regulatory review process for the proposed Ethereum exchange-traded fund (ETF), following the trust’s recent registration in Delaware and the public disclosure of its 19b-4 filing a week ago.
Describing the ETF as an “emerging growth company,” BlackRock positions the iShares Ethereum Trust as an investment vehicle facilitating indirect investment in Ethereum. The trust operates as a repository, holding Ethereum and issuing representative shares to investors, reflecting a share of the trust’s holdings.
Oversight of the fund involves a consortium of entities, with iShares Delaware Trust Sponsor LLC leading, Coinbase Custody Trust Company, LLC securing the Ethereum (ETH), and other entities managing cash assets and administrative responsibilities.
In alignment with the previously filed 19b-4, the trust outlines that shares are traded in significant clusters known as “Baskets,” accessible to institutional investors or specialized firms. Retail investors can access shares via the stock market (Nasdaq), but their market price may deviate from the actual Ethereum value held in the fund. Ultimately, the ETF’s launch hinges on SEC approval of the ETH ETF.
BlackRock, in justifying the necessity of SEC approval, emphasizes the potential risks faced by retail investors in the absence of a regulated product. The firm contends that gaining Ethereum exposure through non-regulated avenues poses hazards, and the proposed ETF would provide a regulatory-compliant means for investors to engage with crypto services.
This move follows BlackRock’s recent interest in the cryptocurrency sector, demonstrated by its application for a Bitcoin spot ETF. As regulatory scrutiny unfolds, the industry awaits the SEC’s decision, anticipating the potential expansion of accessible and regulated investment avenues in the cryptocurrency market.