The bank of New York Mellon (BNY Mellon), America’s oldest bank, has signed an agreement with cryptocurrency asset manager Grayscale Investments to provide a set of services to its flagship Bitcoin (BTC) investment product.
Grayscale officially announced Tuesday that it selected BNY Mellon as an asset servicing provider for Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), a major digital currency investment product providing indirect exposure to Bitcoin.
BNY Mellon is also expected to provide transfer agency and exchange-traded fund-related services for the GBTC upon its conversion to an exchange-traded fund, or ETF, Grayscale noted. As part of the agreement, BNY Mellon will provide GBTC with fund accounting and administration effective Oct. 1, 2021.
The agreement aims to further improve Grayscale’s GBTC in terms of scalability, resiliency and automation through BNY Mellon’s platform, including the bank’s proprietary ETF center that offers technology specifically designed to support digital asset ETFs. The new development is also an important milestone for Grayscale as it reinforces the company’s commitment to converting GBTC into an ETF as its strategic goal, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein said.
Roman Regelman, CEO of asset servicing and head of digital at BNY Mellon, noted that the bank’s relationship with Grayscale “stands squarely at the intersection of trust and innovation.”
“It’s another critical milestone in our rapidly growing digital asset capabilities and broader strategy of putting client choice at the center of everything we do,” he added.
Grayscale’s GBTC is not the only potential ETF that is expected to involve BNY Mellon’s expertise. In 2019, BNY Mellon was appointed to serve as transfer agent and administrator of Bitwise Asset Management’s proposed Bitcoin ETF.
As previously reported, United States regulators have not yet approved a Bitcoin ETF, having delayed multiple regulatory decisions on such products in recent months. Other global jurisdictions like Canada and Brazil have already launched several Bitcoin ETF products, including ETFs by Canadian asset manager 3iQ, European firm CoinShares and Brazilian asset manager QR Asset Management.